Causes for Missing Deadlines and Solutions
If you get frequent assignments from your manager or employer, then you are probably aware of the pressure to complete those tasks on time. Yet, sometimes you hardly make to complete some of the projects on time or you miss your deadline for the task you expected it wouldn’t take that long. What happened there?
Do you properly prioritize?
It is very important that you prioritize your assignments properly. Do not hesitate to use all kinds of tools or reminders to sort your tasks by priority and estimate the time needed for each of them. Even a pen and a piece of paper might do the trick, but if possible, try using one of those cloud tools for your computer or smart phone to remind you about your tasks or assignments.
A couple of minutes wasted on keeping track of your list of priorities and updating it properly might go long way later on when you are try to meet your deadlines.
Do you manage your time effectively enough?
Quite frequently people do not properly estimate the time needed for a certain task. At the same time, certain assignments may seem easy at start, but could get very complicated once you dig in. On top of this, there are all sorts of distractions and concentration issues that can obstruct you from meeting your deadline. So, good assessment of time needed for a certain activity along with effective time management techniques is a must.
Do you frequently multitask?
Do you frequently find yourself multitasking in order to meet your deadlines for more than one assignment? According to some recent studies, multitasking appears as not that effective as people usually think. It is proven that doing a single task at a time represents a more efficient way of handling your job priorities. Once you concentrate on one task, try to complete it before proceeding to the next one. This way your concentration will be better and you will be more detailed and precise with each of your assignments. Once you are done with one, take a small break and reward yourself with a nice 5-10 minute walk, or some relaxing music, and then proceed to another task.
Can you handle distractions in a proper way?
If you work in an office and your colleagues frequently have a joke to tell or they just like to chit-chat during the work hours, you might be tempted to join them. Also, if you work in front of the computer and have a hard time resisting to watch all those funny videos your friends post on their Facebook or Twitter, then you need to deal better with those distractions.
Find a proper way of dealing with them. Using earplugs if you are work in a noisy office, or closing down all browsers, social network notifications or silencing your cell phone can help you concentrate better. Once one of your tasks is completed, reward yourself with 5-10 minutes of chit chat with your co-workers or check out what’s new on your favorite news or sport portals.
Do you communicate about your deadline with your supervisor on time?
By talking with your supervisor, you can assess the priorities of certain tasks and how flexible some of the deadlines might be. Even if you are falling behind with a certain assignment, just notifying your manager or employer about that can be enough for him to dedicate an additional resource to help you meet the deadline.
Generally, it is a very bad practice to stay silent until your deadline is there and notify your boss that you didn’t make it. Communicate that on time! You will see a much better result.
How do you meet deadlines? We would like to hear some of your proven techniques. Let’s share some best practices!