Task management is an important part of any job, but it's especially important for clerical staff members because their jobs affect the jobs of the people they are supporting. Also, task management plays a huge role in the overall workplace efficiency, which is why it's extremely important for administrative assistants to manage their time well. By implementing a few simple tips into your daily routine, you can improve your time management skills.
Being good at task management requires a solid plan of attack, especially if you provide clerical support for multiple people. Each week, make a list of everything you have to complete by the end of the week. Then, break that list down into daily tasks. This gives you a rough outline of your weekly schedule. Don't forget about the last-minute tasks people give you; give yourself a few minutes each morning to create a daily schedule and include any additional tasks.
According to a recent article on Forbes.com, you'll become better at task management if you manage other areas of your life, like stress, instead of managing your time. For example, it can be stressful to work on projects, answer the phone, and greet visitors. However, your day will be a lot less stressful if you eat your lunch and take your breaks away from your desk. You will stop worrying about the phone during your breaks and come back to your desk feeling refreshed and able to focus.
Many people believe they get more work done by multitasking, but multitasking makes your job stressful and makes it harder to focus. You can't allow the phones to go unanswered, but you can limit your other work and only focus on one thing at a time.
The key to being successful with task management is prioritizing. When you accept new projects, make sure you know the level of urgency. This way, if other employees need your help, you'll know which projects need your immediate attention and which projects can wait. By focusing on the most important tasks first, you're helping to increase your office's overall workplace efficiency.
Creating time blocks on your schedule also helps you stay focused. For example, if you have a lot of work to complete, review your schedule and create a power hour. During this time, ignore unimportant emails and anything else that distracts you. If you can't create hour-long time blocks, try 15 minute increments throughout the day.
An administrative assistant's job will always be hectic. You have to be able to multitask a little bit each day. However, by managing your stress, creating a schedule, limiting multitasking, learning to prioritize, and implementing time blocks throughout your day, you'll become much better at task management.
(Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net)
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