Perfecting the To-Do List

Last week, Meg wrote a post about learning to steal and mentioned using my method for organizing tasks. Many of you asked about what it was and it’s actually something very simple that I learned from my boss at an internship I held in Tampa several years ago. I call it the box method – organizing your to-do list with boxes and putting boxes next to all of your action items.

Every Monday morning, the first thing I do (after making myself Chai Tea) is make my to-do list for the week. I organize the list in sections by client and usually carry over items from the week before that weren’t completed. As the week goes on, I add to the list and check off completed tasks. The list is always open on my desk to keep me focused and on top of all of my work. It also helps me at the end of the week and even at the end of the month to see what I did for each client when developing recaps or activity reports.

In terms of meetings, we all carry around our notebooks to take notes but it’s often hard to keep all of your action items in order when you have several meetings a day. While you’re taking notes, if your teammate calls out an action item, like researching an event or drafting a pitch, but a box next to the item (even if it’s mid sentence) while you are writing to make sure you get back to it and even add it to your master list. It’s a sure way for you to see everything you need to get completed as you flip through your notebook.  Once you complete the task, simply check off the box.

The method isn’t rocket science, but I’ve found it to to be the easiest and most proficient way to keep my action items organized and make sure I complete all of my work.

What are some of your methods for staying organized?

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