Project Management

How to Prioritize Your Workload

From Martina
January 12, 2022

How to Prioritize Your Workload to Get Things Done 

Everyone has a hard time managing their workload. Whether you’re a CEO or freelancer, prioritizing work is often quite challenging.

Should you use a to-do list to mark what’s important? Or, is it better to use a project management tool?

You can try different methods to prioritize your workload. Below are a few proven techniques used by business leaders that you can utilize right now.

However, there is one important thing to talk about before we proceed.

Stop Multitasking

Many experts recommend multitasking to get work done. However, that is not the best productivity tip to implement in your life. Why?

Studies by Stanford University found multitasking to be a bane rather than a boon. It doesn’t increase productivity or help you meet deadlines.

Instead, people who multitask turn out to be the worst performers. Additionally, they:

  • Cannot organize their thoughts properly
  • Are slow to shift from one task to another
  • Cannot filter irrelevant information efficiently

Needless to say, all of the above prevent you from focusing on your priorities.

Next, let’s find out how you can prioritize your workload like a pro.

Focus on Deadlines

The simplest way to sort your work is to focus on the deadlines. However, you should be first aware of your deadlines and note them down in a place. You can also create a simple to-do list with applicable deadlines in a notepad or tools like Evernote or ReSkript.

Next, start with the tasks with the closest deadlines. You can also use a calendar in tools like ReSkript to stay on track.

Prioritize Based on Urgency and Importance

Entrepreneur Stephen Covey suggested a great way to understand your priorities back in 1989. In his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he recommends focusing on urgency.

Therefore, you should attend to urgent work first. After that, you can attend to what’s important.

Let’s say you have three tasks at hand:

  • File your taxes (due tomorrow)
  • Write a blog post (to be published next week)
  • Mow your lawn

It goes without saying that paying your taxes is the most urgent task. After that, you can think about writing your blog or mowing your lawn.

However, which task should you attend to first?

Let’s say you take 5 hours to write a blog and 2 hours to mow your lawn. But you also have to put in 2 hours of research before you can start writing.

Therefore, it can make sense to start with your blog and then mow your lawn. In this case, you have to rely on relative prioritization to stay productive.

Create a Daily Task List

A daily list of tasks can go a long way to help you prioritize your workload. It also allows you to sort your long-term goals into smaller tasks for more productivity.

Therefore, create a list of 2 - 3 daily tasks based on urgency or deadlines. You can also take advantage of the Most Important Tasks (MITs) methodology. It says you should focus on tasks that make the biggest difference and deserve your time and effort.

Additionally, think about the time a task needs to prepare your MITs accurately.

Do keep in mind that this list is different from your general to-do list. It is recommended to use a digital calendar where you can list your tasks easily, like ReSkript’s calendar.

Think about Your Goals

Not every task or work comes with a deadline or sense of urgency. As a result, you can find it difficult to understand where to focus your energy.

In such cases, you should prioritize your workload based on your goals or objectives.

Let’s say you’re a solo entrepreneur and aim to increase your sales. Now, you have the following tasks in your hand:

  • Finish your monthly bookkeeping
  • Create an online store to sell your products
  • Write a blog to promote your products

Which task do you think will help you increase sales quickly?

The best way would be to create an online store to leverage the huge customer base on the internet. You can then write blogs to market your products and build brand awareness.

You should always pick a goal and focus on it. That is the secret people in high power roles use to excel in their duties, according to research.

Consider the Effort You have to Give

The work at hand can feel overwhelming sometimes. You may face difficulties in preparing your to-do list and understanding what needs to be done.

If you’re in such a position, consider the effort needed to perform each task. You can then make a list of tasks that need low effort and time. Next, you can power through the list and complete multiple tasks in less time.

The process will reduce your workload and create a sense of fulfilment. You can then shift your concentration to prioritize your remaining workload.

Cut Off Distractions

Prioritizing your workload will bring zero results if you cannot complete your tasks. As a result, you should make an effort to reduce or cut out distractions to focus on the tasks at hand.

Unfortunately, it may not be easy to eliminate distractions. You have to track any interruption and take steps to resolve the issue.

For example, people working from home can get distracted by kids or family members. Therefore, it can help to create a separate workspace or dedicate a room to work in isolation.

Distractions can also come from other sources. You can get several notifications from your email or messaging apps that disrupt your concentration.

So, switch off your notifications to avoid any distractions. You can also use email automation tools to send automated replies that you are busy and will reply at the soonest.

Final Thoughts

Prioritizing workload is necessary to keep up your performance and productivity. Get all your tasks in a single place and use the methods we discussed to sort your work. You can focus on deadlines, urgency, or your daily to-do list to stay on track. Additionally, consider your goals and sort them into short-term tasks to work efficiently.

About ReSkript:

ReSkript is an innovative platform that has developed a socially enhanced collaborative system building a seamless experience across joint professional online cooperative work on various documents. Its proprietary platform offers a range of collaboration


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