Creating calendar time blocks is one of the best productivity strategies. Laying out your activities on a calendar helps you get more done in less time. However, many business professionals struggle to stick with their time blocks as energy diminishes during the day and surprises come up.
Your ability to get more done in less time impacts how many prospects you can contact each week and how many clients you can serve. Time blocking helps, and if you want to stick with your time blocks, follow these five productivity strategies.
1. Create Templates for Your Tasks
Let’s say one of your tasks is writing proposals to potential clients. For the inexperienced professional, a proposal may appear daunting. Experienced professionals will breeze through writing a proposal, but not because they’re better than inexperienced professionals.
At a certain point, experienced professionals recognize the patterns within their work. When writing proposals, you will find yourself reusing the same sentences and examples. Rather than reinvent the wheel, many skilled professionals use a template to act as a guide when writing proposals. These templates allow you to get more done in less time and stick with your time blocks.
Planning your approach for each task on your time block will allow you to enter a deep work state sooner. A deep workflow state is when you get lost in the work and no distraction can impede on your progress. It becomes significantly easier to get more done in less time when you enter the deep workflow state. You may also invest in a task management software like the ones you can find at https://rock.so/tasks/ to help you manage and organize your team’s daily or weekly tasks.
2. Put Each Task in Your Calendar
If you want to get something done, put time in your calendar, so you have the highest probability to get it done. When you include time blocks in your calendar, you can schedule your time blocks around activities throughout the day. If you don’t schedule time blocks within your calendar, you risk not being laser focused on what you intend to happen (your highest payoff activities).
Most business professionals would prioritize the incoming prospect calls. However, these calls can derail your time blocks if you don’t plan for your calls when creating the time blocks. Working by appointment only, as much as possible, is ideal.
Getting more done in less time isn’t about cramming your calendar with tasks. This skill also requires proper scheduling. Calendars put time in perspective. You only have 24 hours in a day, and you won’t spend all 24 hours working. If you stop working at 6 pm, aim to complete every task by 5 pm. That way, you have an extra hour of legroom to shuffle tasks around in case something comes up.
3. Enable Smooth Transitions
Imagine finishing a marathon and then immediately playing a local soccer game with your buddies. That’s a horrible transition. Your body will ache and walking alone will be a challenge. When stuffing activities in your time blocks, consider how you will transition from one activity to the next.
Writing a proposal makes it easier to then transition into email outreach than create a client video. We must perform our tasks, but how we order our tasks impacts our ability to get more done in less time. Perform all of your prospecting tasks within the same time block and perform non-prospecting tasks within different time blocks.
Constantly bouncing around from one frame of mind to the other will hurt your productivity and create friction within your workflow. Rather than bounce around throughout the day, group your tasks based on similarities. This productivity strategy will create smoother transitions within your workflow.
4. Remove Distractions
Any distraction will hurt your productivity. When you combine distractions with a rigid work schedule, it’s tempting to cut corners. Business professionals avert this scenario by considering any distractions in advance and preparing for them.
You can only remove distractions if you know what distracts you. While some people get distracted by the TV, other people get distracted by surfing the web. Knowing what distracts you gives you the power to remove those distractions from your life.
The next time you get distracted, write down what distracted you. Compile a list of distractions and identify how to move those distractions further out of reach. Turn off the Wi-Fi when performing tasks that don’t require Wi-Fi. Move the TV remote to a different room, so it’s more difficult to watch TV instead of work.
Each barrier you put in front of your distractions enables you to get more done in less time.
5. Take Brief Breaks to Regain Energy
Very few business professionals can work nonstop throughout the day. We aren’t productivity machines. We are people who need breaks to recharge. Scheduling brief breaks within your time blocks matters just as much as scheduling tasks.
Business professionals take various mini breaks that range from a brief walk or a 15-minute power nap. These breaks pull you away from the computer screen to return to work fully focused.
Scheduling brief breaks mixes up the day and will help you get more done in less time. Creating time blocks is a great way to boost your productivity. Sticking with them allows you to reap the rewards by taking your business to the next level of success.