Time’s pretty fickle isn’t it? When we have lots of it we love it but usually end up squandering it with a ‘I’ll do it tomorrow mentality.’ When time is of the essence and we have very little of it, we resent it and tend to leave an urgent task until the very last minute before a deadline. Poor time can’t win!
Time is so tricky because we can’t control how fast passes but we can control how we spend our time. Imagine what you could do, not if you had more time, but if you spent your time more wisely, if you were more time savvy?
What would you do?
Our goal here at Creative Analysis is to use technology and tools to help business owners to truly make the most of their time. We don’t mean multitasking here, but instead, by using online platforms such as CRMs to have the business freedom to be able to work remotely and to operate location independently, thus being able to manage their personal life and time around their work rather than being a slave to their business.
Technology can be testing though (sometimes it just won’t do as it’s told!) Business coach, Ling Wong makes an important point in her article about technology’s limitations in business: “The most important thing to remember about “technology” – it’s intended to make our lives easier. It’s intended to help us achieve our goals faster.” She wisely advises: “If it’s not doing either, if it’s distracting you from actually doing that – CHUCK IT!”
So how can the ‘tasks’ feature on a CRM like the system provided by Zoho help save time and tick off tasks when the tock is ticking?
Here’s 10 ways Zoho Tasks helps you tackle that to-do list…
1) Target: Having a date in mind of when to aim to get a task done sets a plan in motion, gives you a goal to work towards and can motivate you immensely. You have a destination, reaching the date of the deadline with the task complete, you visualize how to get there and bingo, you’re tackling the task before you even know it!
2) Accountability: With all members of your team having a CRM login, you can assign and delegate jobs to team members. You and your colleagues are much more likely to get into gear once your name (and your CRM profile picture!) has been put against a task and you’ve taken responsibility for it.
3) Transparency: An open and transparent team is a happier team and a happier team is a more productive one! With Zoho Tasks everyone can view other people’s tasks so can see what progress they are making to see if they need a hand or to avoid duplicating work.
4) Priority: Tasks can be assigned a suitable priority status depending on their urgency ( Highest, High, Medium, Low and Lowest). This feature can help you get organised on what to tackle first, what to delegate and what can’t be delayed.
5) Focus: Zoho tasks can be viewed and ordered in different lists to help you focus on the important things so deadlines aren’t missed. You can opt for ‘Today’s Tasks’ to concentrate on your immediate activities, “Delayed Tasks” to see what you need to catch up on or choose “Upcoming Tasks” to get prepared.
“This Week’s Tasks” and “This Month’s Tasks” are great for monitoring progress and taking the long view when planning how you and your team will manage the time ahead in meetings.
6) Communication: Zoho Tasks allow documents to be attached and comments to be left within the task by other team members to minimize duplication, steps back and confusion. Communication facilitates collaboration which, viola, leads to efficiency and an enjoyable work environment!
7) Convenience: Each task can be linked to an ‘account’ (that represents a client). Within the task you can see how many hours the task owner has spent doing different bits of work for that particular client, handy when it comes to invoicing that client at the end of the month or a project.
8) Balance: By being able to see other team member’s tasks you can see what progress they’ve made and how many jobs they’ve been assigned. If the status of the task has been ‘Needs Action’ or ‘In-Progress’ for a while as a team leader you might want to check up on the task owner to check if they are coping with their workload, need a hand or if they are finding a particular job too challenging.
9) Nudge: Zoho tasks allows you to set reminders for yourself and decide if you want these reminders as email prompts, pop-ups on your computer or both so a task is less likely to be ignored! Don’t forget Zoho CRM is an integrated system and accessible via a phone app on your mobile devices so those task nudges can find you even when you’re working remotely!
10) Fun Incentive: As well as setting follow-up and sub-tasks, tagging and colour-coding, Zoho CRM offers the added bonus of a bit of healthy competition, with the team member who completes the most tasks in a day winning a task badge in one of its games to boost efficiency, lead generation, conversions and banter!
Remember technology can’t benefit us unless we use it properly. If you spend three hours setting yourself tasks every day imputing them onto your CRM, common sense dictates you’re not going to save time with the CRM system. If you upload tasks then rarely glance at your CRM task list you’re not likely to be organised and productive either.