We all struggle with deadlines. Sometimes it is because clients come in unexpected or maybe we just forgot and it slipped up on us. Here are 6 tips for staying on top of deadlines.
Deadlines can be our friend or our enemy. Clients come in and want something rushed because they need it right away. First thing that comes to mind is, “How can I do this project and finish the other three on my desk on time”. It’s a dilemma every business faces.
How to Solve Rush Jobs
First if it is a new client do not take a rush job as the first one. They will expect that service from you on every project. Calmly tell them you are booked and that you would love to do it but you can’t start until….
Second if it is an existing customer explain again very calmly that you will do it but it will mean working overtime and that cost more money. Be prepared by already establishing a rush job rate. Stick with the increase in money explaining to the customer you also have other customers to please but you would be glad to do it but it cost you more so you have to recoup that additional cost.
Most customers understand they are at your mercy for a rush job but don’t take advantage of their situation just work with it.
The Importance of Deadlines
Deadlines should be sacrosanct in all businesses. So much so that there needs to be rules and processes to cover them. After all your business will always be their if you treat everyone favorably by a set standard of rules.
6 Rules for Meeting Deadlines
Here are 6 rules for meeting deadlines. Learn them well.
1. Never take on more work then you can handle.
2. Never Load your schedule to its maximum capacity. Always leave some wiggle room for revisions, late customers, or additional assignments.
3. Keep a list of current projects nearby your desk or work area so you can refer to it often.
4. Jot down all project deadlines in your appointment book, electronic schedule, or any thing else you consult daily or if you are out of the office.
5. Schedule deadlines so they fall on a Monday or a Tuesday so if you fall behind you have the weekend to re-coup.
6. Use email for delivering projects to give you even more time should you need it. If your project is not deliverable electronically then make sure you can courier or overnight it for deadline deliverable.
Remember your clients have all the power and they choose to use you. So treat them with respect, but make sure they treat you the same way.