Three weeks ago I started a series of posts about an organization and planning system I have been using and improving for the past 15 years. The first post outlined creating a list of the actions you want to accomplish. The second post described how to organize and prioritize the list of activities. The third post showed how to use an electronic system to organize and execute your activities. Today’s post will finish up with how to record your activities once they are completed.
As I mentioned last week, each day I create a new list of activities I plan to do.
Paper based system
If you are using a paper based system, review your list of activities to transfer (re-write) a new list for today. Transfer everything that wasn’t completed yesterday to your new list. Only transfer the description of the activities and not the priority labels. Add any new activities to your list and then prioritize the entire list. More about the prioritization labels are here. Then continue planning your day as described in this post.
If you are using an electronic system like the one I suggested last week, the steps are different. In the template provided last week, are tabs for each month to store completed tasks. To store your completed activities:
- Sort your list so that activities are grouped together.
- Select the block of completed activities and “cut” them.
- “Paste” the completed activities to a new tab with this month’s label. Each day you will “cut/paste” the completed activities to the bottom of the list for this month.
The tab for each month becomes a historical record of all the activities you completed. It becomes an impressive list when looking back at all you have done. It can be especially helpful if you need to report your activities or for performance reviews.
The paper based or electronic system is a one stop shop for all activities. Don’t use multiple systems or locations for your lists. Pick one and stay with one. Otherwise you will lose productivity and effectiveness keeping track of multiple systems. It is key to stick with one.
In my electronic system, I also have a tab for my vision/mission statement, and goals. I can easily jump to that tab whenever I need to refresh my plan.
I hope that the series of Monday posts have given you some ideas to incorporate in to your organizational plan. I would love to learn about organizational plans that you use. I am always seeking new methods and tools to help organize my activities.
What tools and methods do you use to organize and track your activities?