I heard a business coach speak recently on the subject of productivity, and was struck by something she said about to-do lists: make sure to keep each task manageable. So rather than noting that you have to write your company’s marketing plan, break the job down into multiple steps you can tackle, cross off, and feel good about.
It’s an interesting point, and one I don’t always adhere to. My main work related to-do list is pretty big picture, in fact — as a freelancer, I like to have a good high-level sense of how much, exactly, I’m juggling — though I do sometimes write out a secondary list so that smaller tasks don’t fall through the cracks.
Which doesn’t mean there’s no room for improvement, of course. Rather than reminding myself to prepare some advance posts for this blog, for instance, I suspect I’d be better off committing to a specific number — say, enough for next week. And rather than noting that I need to research an article I’m preparing, it might make sense to define a couple of micro-topics I’d like to explore.
How do you manage your to-do lists?