A Virtual Assistant is a virtuoso when it comes to time management. But believe it or not, they could get overwhelmed too. Here are 8 time management hacks a virtual assistant should consider to maintain productivity:
- Get 7 to 9 Hours of Sleep Every Day. Productivity begins the night before. Doctors have long advocated getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep for better brain and body functioning. If you get less than 7 hours, you will feel sluggish and your level of cognition will be compromised.
- Do an End-of- the Week Review. At the end of every work week, ask your client if he or she is amenable to do a review of the previous 5 days. Assess performance, identify potential problem areas and draw up courses of action for implementation the following work week.
- Target 4 Hours of Productive Work Every Day. According to research, regular office workers only accomplish 90 minutes of productive time per day. That’s only an efficiency rating of 18%. If you dedicate 90 minutes to complete a task, 4 hours or 360 minutes would mean you could accomplish 4 tasks every day!
- Never Multi-Task. Even in this day and age of smart phones and digital technology, you should never multi-task. You will open yourself up to making mistakes because your focus will be divided. Dedicate full and undivided attention one task at a time. Always keep in mind that it’s the quality of work that counts, not the quantity.
- Set a Target of 3 Goals Every Day. Goal setting is a powerful tool for improving productivity. But make sure your goals are realistic and attainable. Review your list of tasks and determine which ones are urgent and have more immediate deadlines. Then rank them in order of priority. Do this at the end of your work shift.
- Schedule Work Breaks. If you work too hard, too long you will eventually break down. There is a limit to your capacity to remain focused and productive. The more you work, the less productive you become. Put in a 30 minute break every time you accomplish a task. It could be a nap, a quick meal or a short walk to clear the mind and get circulation going. Short breaks help recharge your batteries.
- Learn to Say “No”. It’s great to be in demand but you should not be taking in any more clients if it will affect your commitments to others. The clients that you have now will help build your business. As long as the quality of your work remains consistent, you can be rest assured your clients will continue to give you more business.
- Get Help. Another solution if you continue to get job offers is to hire your own Virtual Assistant. You can delegate spillover work to him or her. Start out with an easy project; one where the probability of mistakes is very small. Propose an income sharing arrangement. For example, if you are getting paid $12 per hour, pay your assistant $7. You may not get everything but you get a new client nonetheless.
Effective time management will get more things done and improve productivity. It’s not just about watching the clock. You have to be mindful and strategic on how you utilize time on a daily basis.