As a leader, you already know the dangers of not being organized. It adds stress, leads to operational failures, and can irreparably hurt your brand financially and reputationally. But, reaching the optimal level of organizational zen can be a challenging journey through tried and failed processes, introspection, and cultural development within your organization.
To get on the right path and develop the core organizational skills you need as a company leader, this article shares seven tips to get you started:
Don’t Tackle Every Aspect of Your Business Every Day
Being part of leadership requires pivoting and juggling numerous demands at once. So the title ‘Leading Multitasker’ should probably go after the CEO denotation, right? However, touching on several focuses every day may not be helping your organizational efforts because your mind gets pulled every which way.
Instead, consider restructuring your work week to focus on just one or two primary responsibilities. You could even segment your attention daily if weekly prioritization takes too much time. For example, on Mondays, you could handle marketing goals and conduct follow-ups on Wednesdays with additional strategic planning. Pick a flow that works for you, but try to slim down how much you’re tackling in any given day to ensure you’re giving enough focus to each task.
Keep Your Emotions Level
Stress is a fact of life as a leader. Situations can get heated between decision-making and your team waiting on your guidance. Not letting frustrations cloud your judgment or interfere with your ability to analyze the issue and find actionable solutions that bring the best benefit is critical.
When tensions are high, step back from the moment whenever possible. Whether you opt to go for a walk, work out at the gym, or do some other activity that helps you recenter, finding a way to calm down will ensure your next steps are level-headed and clearly thought out.
Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate
Working in a leadership role comes with significant responsibilities, but this doesn’t mean you have to shoulder them alone. In fact, if you were to sit down and review everything you’re doing, you may realize there is a lot you don’t need to handle in the first place. It’s amazing how much one can put on their plate without realizing it, and this extra work detracts from your capacity and efficiency.
Don’t balk at delegating some of your workloads to other team members. If you don’t want to add to their already busy schedules, consider hiring a virtual assistant who can handle some of your day-to-day tasks remotely instead. This may be an ideal option because you won’t have to carve out additional office space for them to work. In addition, these professionals typically already have the necessary equipment to do the job.
Don’t Obsess Over Email
Do you find the email or messenger notifications on your phone, laptop, smartwatch, and other devices jarring to your concentration? You aren’t alone. Every ding is mentally piling on a sense of urgency when there may not even be necessary. Consider turning off your notifications and only reviewing your messages at specific times of the day to avoid disrupting your thought process.
This step also helps you reclaim productivity because you aren’t wasting time sorting non-essential emails during essential work time. Also, take advantage of built-in features like message filtering and color coding. As a result, you can focus your attention on only those things deemed necessary to know about immediately and what can wait.
Dedicate Time Solely for Critical Decision-Making
Brainstorming solutions and general creativity require a clear mind performing at its peak. You don’t want distractions during this time, so you get the most out of your thought process. Determine what time of day your deep thinking capacity is at its best and save that time for only these tasks. Waiting until you have free time is rarely the best approach since you are probably worn down mentally or feel rushed to come to a decision.
Pre-Book and Commit to Your Vacation
As a CEO, life can often feel like all work and no play. Part of your organizational skills must include maintaining a healthy work-life balance. How can you be an effective leader if you don’t take the time to recharge your batteries? Tough decisions and managing everyday responsibilities will wear you down physically and mentally, so take care of yourself to ensure optimum performance.
If you constantly promise yourself a break but never follow through, book your vacations ahead of time. Even a year in advance, do it and commit to taking this time away. Plus, the earlier you schedule your holiday, the less likely it will conflict with other events on your calendar.
Embrace Automation as Part of Your Organizational Processes
One of the reasons we rely on organization is to be more efficient. As your company grows, you will need more complex tools to handle the scale of your work. Automated tasks through the use of advanced tech tools will future-proof your company and help maintain how organized you are.
Many businesses aren’t waiting till they reach a certain level of growth and have already invested in time-saving software to handle everything from customer management to filing and payment processing. Even VoIP has transformed segmented communication into a centralized process bringing regular calls to SMS messaging, scheduling, and email under a single umbrella.
How much time would you save by automating follow-up calls, generating AI-driven metric reporting, and using cloud-based data sharing? Consider these tools when developing the different methods for handling the many aspects of your business.
A Leader’s Work Is Never Done
These seven tips can go a long way in helping you create a more organized approach to your leadership role. Then, as your company expands, goes in a new direction, or increases the number of projects on your desk, you will find yourself better prepared to adapt.
Take the time to understand your processes and how they help or hinder your leadership abilities. Then, move forward from this revelation by implementing a strategy that helps boost your organizational skills. Finally, empower yourself by incorporating the necessary tools and systems to support your goals of being efficient and effective while being mindful of your sense of self.