Sorry about the title, it's just the first thing that came to mind. I swear I'm not a potty mouth!!!!
Okay I kind of am.
But I used an asterisk instead of spelling it out completely, so that makes it more innocent!!!!
I am an innocent potty mouth.
Okay I'm getting side tracked. Back to business!!!!
As a business owner, it's important to be efficient and get things done! And since I've been in business for almost 4 years now, I'd like to think of my work flow as something I've worked hard to improve so that now it's more like a well oiled machine. Yes, I'm a true believer in the saying, "Work smarter not harder." My goal is to always be as efficient as possible, to get as much done as possible, and in the least amount of time as possible.
So here are 3 things I've learned to do over the years to make my workflow as streamlined and as efficient as possible! While my business is a photography business (obviously,) you could probably apply these tips to any kind of business. So if you're a business owner, think about how these might apply to YOU!!!
1. Schedule all your work tasks.
If it's not scheduled, it's not real! Do this using whatever method works best for you, but I'm currently scheduling all my work related events and tasks in an awesome app called 'Planner Plus.' It's the best planner app I've tried to date (and I've tried a lot of them!) and I love the way it looks and how it allows me to color code different types of events. Work-related things, personal things, random tasks etc all appear in particular colors on my calendar so I can see what my schedule is like in one glance! I can schedule timed events on days as well as tasks that don't necessarily need to get done at a particular time- just as long as they get done. I will start each month by entering everything work-related into this app, and then I will add things that may pop up as the days go by. Then, because I'm old fashioned and love a good old fashioned to-do list, at the end of each day I will look at my app, see what needs to get done the following day and create a tangible paper list that stays on my desk. Writing out a list for the following day also helps to clear the mind so that you can really relax without constantly thinking about what might need to get done!
Yes … yes I'm aware that my iPhone's Otter Box is both dirty and sagging.
This situation clearly needs to be remedied with a cute NEW iPhone case.
2. Create and use a client workflow sheet.
For me, it's super important that each and every client I work with has a great experience. And not only that, it's important that this experience I give to clients be consistent with everyone. So that's why I have created a list of literally ALL the steps I go through with each and every client- from the second they book me to the very last e-mail after the wedding or shoot and beyond. I created a chart in Photoshop which I printed off that lists all of these steps, and then as soon as I book a new client I enter their name(s) onto the chart and check off each step as they are completed. This allows me to give every client the same great experience EVERY time. It also helps me to keep track of what I've already done with particular clients and what still needs to be done for others.
3. Use a post processing chart.
I recently found THE CUTEST notebook/clipboard combo at Target. It's bright pink with gold polka dots and it makes me super happy!!! Anyway, I now use it for my post processing chart. Basically, I perform the same steps on each and every photo shoot/wedding. And some times I've got multiple weddings and shoots that I'm working on at the same time. Using a little chart which lists all the steps that need to be performed in post production helps me to keep track of what has already been done for some shoots/weddings and what still needs to be done for others. It also keeps me efficient and consistent with my post processing!
I swear, I'm obsessed with organizing things and lists. They are the BEST THINGS EVER.
Well, TWO of the best things ever.
First comes my family, friends, Mr. Purrie, coffee, laughing my head off …
you know, the usual.
Anyway, no matter what type of business that you have, hopefully you can find these tips useful! I recently wrote a post on how to create the ultimate to-do list to effectively manage your time and get TONS OF SHIZ DONE, so you should check that out.
What has been your best strategy for getting sh*t done? Please share in the comments below!