Thanksgiving, Christmas and ringing in the New Year tend to be productivity killers anyway between days off, office parties and out-of-work commitments.
Yet, no matter how much you have going on during the race to the gift-giving season and beyond, there’s hope that you can squeeze some productivity out of the final fleeting weeks of 2016.
Have a clear focus on the most important tasks to accomplish between now and year’s end. That might mean carving out time to review what’s coming up on your calendar, what’s a priority and the steps you need to take to finish. Tip: Try reviewing projects periodically, perhaps on a monthly basis, to help stay on track and align your time accordingly.
Give yourself a deadline – and stick to it! Holding yourself accountable is a good way to ensure that projects are done on time. Tip: Don’t forget to cut yourself some slack when setting deadlines, particularly in the midst of the holiday season. Skipping your son or daughter’s Christmas play might help you meet a project deadline, but may not be the best approach.
Don’t be afraid to delegate or ask for help to complete essential projects. Conquering that long-term task might be out of reach by year’s end for you alone. With a little teamwork, an end of December deadline could be feasible – and double as a confidence-boosting and ambitious start to 2017.
Reflect on 2016, look ahead to 2017 in terms of your achievements. How closely did you come to meeting or surpassing your goals for the year? Taking an honest look at where you’ve been will help in plotting the course for the new year. Tip: Focus on what worked, why it worked and how you can capitalize on that success in 2017. Eliminate unnecessary tasks or failed efforts from your new year plan.
With a little pre-holiday planning, your productivity can be kept on pace – and feel more like a marathon than a sprint.