Turimex Houston: “Work smarter, not harder” is an age-old adage.
Once you master the concept, the rest of your working life will be easier.
There are simple techniques that you can employ to save steps and tedium while performing almost any task.
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Assess everything that needs to be done.
Look over every aspect of the job, and allow yourself ample “pondering time” so that you can be sure that every detail is accomplished on time and accurately.
Make an outline.
Learn to say no.
Avoid over-scheduling yourself and be realistic about what you can accomplish in a single day. Sometimes you just have to cut yourself off because, in most professions, there is almost always something that could be done.
Specify your goals.
Set a time limit for when you stop working on the task at hand and take a rest.
- People tend to work hard when following a desirable goal.
Control clients by communicating properly.
Make sure your clients will understand what the normal turnaround time will be for a project.
Do not be influenced by their insistence that their job requires a big rush.
Most businesses have more than one client.
Yet many clients forget that their job is not the only one you’re working on.
- Give one to three choices – never more. Handing a swatch book to a client and saying, “Tell me which colors you are interested in” is deadly. Too many choices will cause horrible delays as the customer peruses ALL possibilities and later tends to second-guess every decision. Instead, say things like, “Do you like this blue or this green better?”
Never accept a bad job.
Re-bid if necessary.
How smart you want to be while you’re working for them is your decision.
Consider your materials.
Evaluate your methods.
Look for shortcuts.
You might have to make minor edits, but the bulk of it will already be written.
Delegate to the right people at the right times.
Recognize the point of ‘diminishing returns.‘
Learn to make your money work for you.
Working a lot and spending every penny you make is NOT working smart!
When you can work, do. Don’t slack or allow time to run out so that you’re rushing at the end to meet a deadline. When you finish early, if nothing else has come in, you can go play or rest. Don’t do it in the middle of the job on a frequent basis.
Listen to people who’ve been there. They’ll often be willing to share their stories. You don’t always have to make your own mistakes to learn smarter ways of doing things.
When you’re sick, stay home and rest until you are well. You make too many mistakes when you’re ill or tired to call that “working smart.”
Watch for mid-stream changes to the job, causing you to go out of pocket much more than you originally planned.
A little tweak is one thing. A big change should make you stop everything while you re-think – and re-bid.