It’s already October! Time of year when I’m sure we are many to be thinking…
“…how will I manage to finish all the work I’ve been given?! And still manage to complete all my annual objectives before year-end?“
How come all of a sudden files have piled up this way? In my case these are the main reasons:
- Some projects were deferred from summer to fall because too many people were vacationing one after another.
- Some unplanned projects were added along the way.
- There’s a rush to finalize next year’s budget and we have to do our part.
Well, it’s not so unusual to have a heavy workload right? The problem is that I look ahead and realize how little time is remaining before year-end. Especially since December is a ‘short’ month – e.g. as of the 20th not much will be happening…
So let’s remind ourselves of a couple tricks that can help us deal with this busy period!
THE GOOD OLD 80/20 RULE and to DELEGATE.
1 The 80/20 rule (or the «Pareto principle») according to the Cambridge Dictionary:
«The Pareto principle, when applied to time, states that 20% of your time determines 80% of your production.»
Here’s what you do for each project and objective:
FIRST, remind yourself of the specific deliverables you are committed to.
SECOND, identify which of the tasks required are the main drivers to reaching these goals. You can then decide how to prioritize and best focus your energy. If you realize there are some tasks that in reality are some ‘nice to have’ rather than an absolute necessity, push those aside for now.
THIRD, determine if some efforts are time-sensitive. Maybe you’ll find that one task should be started in parallel right away so that all the pieces of the puzzle can later come together at the right time.
Bonus advice → Don’t forget your boss in your timetable planning! As we approach the end of the year, everybody gets squeezed and this includes your boss. So when applicable don’t forget to allot a decent amount of time for his review or approval of your documents.
2 Delegate some of the tasks:
It’s certainly worth considering if some parts (even if small) of your workload could be done by some of your colleagues or if people from another team could be of help. The exercise done in step 1 should allow you to evaluate if this seems possible.
You could also test this idea with your boss to get his feedback. He may even have new suggestions to make, bringing you closer to sought solutions.