Being organized is a key skill when it comes to being a VA, especially if you have multiple clients on the go. Not only are you managing their workload, but you also have to handle your own business as well (which can’t fall, otherwise you lose potential future clients). Organization and time management fall hand in hand when it comes to working from home (or from wherever you chose), but what’s most important is finding the routine that works for you and sticking to it. We compiled a list of five of our top tips for keeping organized when it seems like everything is a mess.
Write Everything Down
Writing down important information such as deadlines, upcoming events, passwords, etc. is helpful for keeping organized if you’re the forgetful type. If you hate the ‘sticky note aesthetic’ you can always opt for a notebook and carry it around with you to write down things as they happen (remember your grade school agenda?). This way, if you forget to write something in your phone or add it to your calendar, you have it in writing and can add it later.
Prioritizing your projects by deadlines is helpful because it allows you to start and (hopefully) finish the most important ones first, and have the least important ones on the back burner until they are due. This allows you to seemingly have less on your plate at once, and limit the amount of stress or burnout.
By prioritizing your projects, you also avoid the habit of procrastinating your least enjoyable ones and risk missing deadlines or rushing your work. This way you are putting your best work forward, and are able to still accomplish everything on your to-do list.
Overestimate Time Frames
Overestimating time frames allows you that extra time to breathe in between meetings or projects. It also subconsciously plans for the unexpected; for example, if you overestimate your 45 minute meeting and instead schedule it for an hour, then when your teammate ends up with a bit more to say this week, you were prepared with time to spare, and weren’t late for another meeting or your start time for your next project.
Of course, everyone wishes they had just those couple extra minutes during the day, and this little trick is a sneaky way to add a few extra minutes into your day without even noticing.
Set Aside 10 Minutes For Scheduling
Organized people always have their life super planned out. It’s the easiest way to save time, keep yourself on track with your routine, and not chance getting sidetracked. Especially if you’re working from home, this can be dangerous if you live with other people and are easily distracted.
Setting aside just 10 minutes each night to schedule out your next day is extremely valuable, because it sets you up for success and can also be a form of therapy. It subconsciously lets you know that you’re prioritizing yourself and your success, over that extra 10 minutes of Friends, which is the most sincere form of flattery.
Digital Clean Up
Each of us at TVL has the bad habit of having about 17 tabs open, music playing from two different apps, mail coming in always, our maps on (for whatever reason), Canva continuously running in the background, and files from 2009 piling up in our downloads.
The first step (and maybe the most satisfying?) is cleaning out your emails. We’ve all been victims of that pile of over 100 unread emails (yikes); this will help you find important emails more quickly, and also recognize new, urgent emails sooner.
If you develop any type of content for social media, websites, business, school or really anything, it’s likely you have files in your computer that have no place still being there. Free up some of that space and create new folders to easily access important files using easy to understand labels.
Pictures. Need we say more? Unfortunately, we all have that “this angle is slightly worse, but not enough to delete” picture. It’s time to go. Unless it’s got memories attached to it, or you need it for work, you can always back it up onto a hard drive, or toss it.
For additional information or questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us using the contact us page. Also, be sure to follow us on social media to stay updated on all things TVL, VA course dates and more!