Meeting the deadlines can be problematic and tricky at the same time. It is annoying for team members and the management alike when deadlines are not met on time even with a deadline management tool.
Missed deadlines could be a result of unkept promises or delayed projects and the question is why do these things happen. Better to follow deadline management tools along with some useful tips and be on top of projects holding good long terms with clients.
13 Top Tips to Keep in Mind for Effective Deadline Management
1. Refrain from committing an impossible deadline
It is essential to keep your clients happy, but stay away from giving them false promises for it. Promising for something unachievable over a given timeline or budget can do more harm than good if not using a deadline management tool.
You will not only lose the trust of your boss or customers but also be stuck with the project that will bring frustrations and problems. Right from the start think of whether you would remain committed to a deadline or not.
2. Prioritize all your tasks and activities
The deadline can be best handled with a project division into bits and pieces. Do them all in terms of priority to stay away from losing credibility and motivation, for which a deadline management tool can be extremely helpful.
Don’t do this only because you want to commit to something that you can do and stick to it. Record your commitments and deadlines to stay away from forgetfulness and improper commitments.
3. Identify the purpose to work accordingly
Agree to a deadline described in detail with purpose and expectations on both sides to be clear with misunderstandings. Down the road, this would help a great deal in gauging how to go step by step with the process.
4. Learn to say ‘NO’
It’s not easy but rejects unrealistic requirements right from the start. Get into the habit of saying NO when you truly feel that meeting deadlines is far-fetched.
5. Keep everybody constantly informed
Tell your clients, coworkers, and employees about your commitments and additionally the deadlines for milestones. This further will help you to define goals serving everybody to stick together with a common goal.
6. Plan for uninformed contingencies
Learn to make real-time estimates without loading up your entire schedule. Dedicate at least 50 percent of your project time to researching contingencies.
7. Avoid aiming to be always perfect
There are things you need to avoid making mistakes. But there is plenty of work with sufficient things to be done following an 80/20 rule.
Anyone who wants to deliver a 100 percent perfect solution should remember that it’s just 20% effort bringing 80% results. Focus on things that generate results instead of giving way beyond required ruining personal space and health.
8. Multitasking isn’t always of great help
When things get tight, multitasking will only waste more time, since you tend to work upon both pleasant and unpleasant tasks. You cannot meet the deadline, not in this situation, as it becomes apparent you cannot meet the deadline.
9. Inform stakeholders on time
Inform people associated with the project to push scheduled delays and reduce the deliverable scope to meet the deadline. The key is to inform early in the process and give options for deciding about the alternatives.
10. Recognize we always control our time
You might have a boss, or parents telling you what to do, but fundamentally you are in control of your own time. Choose whatever you want with your time if you don’t have the time to do something that is not a priority.
11. Keep everybody on the same page
This is quite obvious as, without the right kind of coordination, a project is sure to get delayed. Furthermore, if people do not align themselves on a common consensus, then ego clashes are bound to happen.
12. Mark your calendar to keep track of time
A calendar is full of a lot of things allowing one to follow an important principle of time management. Daily highlights like following a checklist of things in a deadline management to be done on a calendar for achieving tasks every day.
13. Use a detailed to-do list
Similar to above, have a checklist in place, with a physical to-do list to write down priority tasks first followed by less important activities. Cross them one by one on your deadline management tool or paper as and when you complete.
It gives a sense of accomplishment as you keep proceeding ahead with enthusiasm. Ensure while crossing down the activities what has been done to complete them.
Deadlines are not those wherein your caliber or skills give up, but rather they act as a threshold limit to stretch yourself. In such a scenario, a one-of-a-kind deadline management tool plays an instrumental role in handling the project stages with apt deadlines.
Of course, there are a ton of such deadline management tools at your disposal, but pick one suiting the above tips best. Even if you are not having a tool at par with your expectations, following the above tips dedicatedly can let you deal with deadline management effectively.