Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Deadline Trifecta

I may not have predicted it but I’ve managed to hit the trifecta of deadlines. I list of work to be done that is embarrassingly long, returning from vacation and reading blog on deadlines. I’m sure everyone else has hit this spot where you’re pretty sure that if you work really hard you might get out from the mountain of work to be done sometime next fall.

Given my current predicament maybe I should have called it a hat-trick. A trifecta is hitting the first, second and third place horses in a race. It is something that is unpredictable and has amazingly long odds. A hat-trick, on the other hand, is scoring three goals in the same game based on talent, hard-work and perseverance. And, for me to have gotten to this spot is far more about determination than it is long odds. After all, if it wasn’t for procrastination there’d be nothing to do tomorrow.

Of course, I’m over-simplifying the problem and really this blog is about how to make a tough situation better so I’d like to thank Addicted to Medblogs for the idea. ATMB apparently works in a legal office and every time a document comes through the door that has a deadline attached to it the administrative staff add the deadline to a calendar and (I assume) help the lawyers organize themselves to meet the deadline. And that’s where my problem enters. My day is managed in 15 minutes blocks (and sometimes less) so unless I do paperwork during the allotted time there’s not much room left over between family and other commitments. We’ve appointed someone to help organize complex cases but more frequently a chart gets dumped on you’re desk with a note “please call…..” or “please clarify …..”. Since our office uses Microsoft Exchange (which has a calendar, note and email feature) there’s no reason that we can’t do the same with documents that arrive in our office. So starting Thursday I’m going to ask staff to start creating calendar items for me rather than sending emails or leaving me slips of paper. Having a routine and list of chores to complete on a day by day basis is far easier than having a heap of work when you arrive each day. Thank for the insight ATMB. Ian.

No comments: