How to Be More Productive with the 4 D’s of Management (Do, Delegate, Delete, Defer)
Developing the habit of everyday productivity seems to be a challenge most of us experience.
We can’t blame anyone else though but ourselves.
Productivity is a habit that most of us should learn and get comfortable with. Though it is a challenge, once we learn how to be productive, we can achieve greater results in our every day.
Time management is at the core of productivity.
Time management is the process of planning how to allocate your time for different activities so you can accomplish the most important tasks each day.
Usually, time management is best used for work, as it allows you to work smart and get more tasks done in less time.
Better time management at work or business allows more hours to devote your time for rest, personal development, and social life. As you improve your time management practices, the greater gains you receive for efficiency and productivity.
The 4 D’s of Time Management
To increase your everyday productivity, it’s best to hone your time management skills. What’s great is that there is a strategy called the 4 D’s to better manage your time.
Let’s take a look at each of the 4 D’s and how you could apply it today:
Productive people prioritize tasks before diving into work. Yet, it has been said that a productive person’s to-do list only consists of a maximum of six tasks.
These six tasks are the most important tasks that one must accomplish for the day. These tasks are a must to be finished by the end of day, which is why you should consider the amount of time needed for each task.
For instance, if you put on your to-do list that you need to create three business plans and three marketing plans in one day, that’s simply unrealistic. You must mix your to-do list with the most important things you can actually do and accomplish in one day.
Still, if there is a task that you can finish in two minutes, such as answering emails or scheduling a meeting, just do it – get it done!
Entrepreneurs or business leaders can’t succeed alone. They need a team with members who have different skill sets, and who they can trust and delegate the tasks they should to.
Delegating is easier said than done. You could have trust issues or you’re not comfortable with the lack of control when you hand out tasks.
To ease yourself into delegating, you can hone your team and let them know what outcomes you want to have. Let them know how you want things done, but also keep an open mind to their ideas as well. Sometimes, their ideas may even surprise you!
Understand that in the beginning, it will take more time to delegate than do the task yourself. But as your team develops and learns more about your business goals, it will save you precious time.
We all have those commitments, both personal and professional, that are not really important or necessary to attend. Such are events that you won’t benefit from or give you any value. Delete these from your schedule.
The value you receive can be anything. It could be for career or personal growth, a potential business opportunity, or maybe a social event that can benefit you with happiness from socialization.
You can also scrap commitments on projects you know you will never complete. Remove yourself from possible interruptions to your productivity such as unnecessary notifications or email subscriptions you no longer open.
Most of all, scrap the tasks that can be automated or delegated. These types of tasks may be the easiest, but they are the ultimate driver of being unproductive.
If you can’t delete a task or an appointment, defer them. You can get on the tasks that are essential but can be delayed when you already have the time to deal with them.
You have to learn how to prioritize tasks based on necessity. Put off until later the tasks that are not urgent. Even if the task seems easy, but would take you at least an hour to finish, defer it. Sometimes, it’s tempting to finish the easier tasks and put off the big tasks which are urgent just for the sake of telling yourself that you’ve accomplished something that day.
Master the 4 Ds of Time Management
Procrastination is one of the top reasons for failure. You as an entrepreneur, business leader, or small business owner should have the discipline to prioritize your tasks to be able to attain a certain goal.
Procrastinating won’t get you anywhere whether in business or life. Yes, it’s easy to put off things and decide to do it later when you’re “in the mood.” However, putting things off means that you’ll be pressed with no more time to finish a task so you settle for a mediocre output. Or worse, you decide not to finish the task ever.
Mastering the 4 D’s of time management will take some time, but it would surely benefit you with more success in the long run.