Whether you’re answering phones while checking in a line of clients at reception, designing a new website while also updating multiple other sites, or project managing at a busy law firm, it’s likely that multitasking at work is required of you at some point. However, the majority of job candidates neglect to put it on their resume, even though it’s a critical skill we often practice mindlessly.
Think about it: you flick on your favorite film and start scrolling through social media, all while streaming the soothing sounds of Beyonce’s new album in the background. That’s a lot of activities demanding your attention at once – the pure definition of multitasking. So how can you translate your at-home multitasking mastery to valuable skills in the workplace?
While taking on too many projects (and managing their every last detail) can actually be detrimental to efficiency and mental performance, when done right, multitasking can be a great way to increase your work efficiency and productivity. Two key ingredients in landing that next promotion!
Ready to learn how? The Guide to Graduate Team has outlined the simplest methods you can begin using today to become a master of multitasking – and it all starts with getting organized.
Get As Organized As Possible
If you’ve ever taken on one-too-many tasks at work, you don’t need us to tell you that juggling multiple projects can get messy, fast. As multiple projects are a core component of multitasking, staying organized is essential to ensure nothing gets lost in the shuffle.
Begin by taking a monthly inventory of your forecasted to-dos, including daily tasks and larger projects. Once you have a list going, prioritize it in order of most to least urgent so you know where to start.
And while we’re talking about prioritizing by urgency…
Set Realistic Goals
Before maximizing your time, you want to be sure you actually have the time to maximize; i.e: you’re not stretching yourself too thin.
Work with your team and managers to set realistic deadlines for what you can achieve each week, then break those weekly goals down to day-by-day tasks and projects so you have something to track against.
Schedule Out Your Tasks
You wouldn’t miss a calendar appointment with a colleague, so why would you cancel on yourself?
Once you have a list of tasks in order of priority, schedule them into your week as meetings with yourself or calendar blocks to hold yourself accountable to due dates and ensure your most important tasks are completed on time. And don’t cancel!
Eliminate All Distractions
We’ve all been at work and gotten sucked into a social-media rabbithole that we can’t seem to escape. However, when a quick check-in on your phone begins turning into a 30 minute screentime-sesh on the regular, your work can begin to become affected.
To give your most important tasks the full-attention they deserve, eliminate anything that could disrupt your focus. This includes non-work related tech items like your phone, non-work related web browsers, and even someone watching television in the same room if you work from home. By taking distractions out of your work environment, you’ll be able to tackle all of your projects with a clear mind.
Remember to Take Breaks
No one said multitasking was easy! Managing multiple projects and tasks can be stressful, so remember to go easy on yourself. Taking a break to refresh and recharge every now and then is more than okay – it’s actually essential in maintaining motivation while re-sparking creativity and new ideas.