The Easy Way to Think Strategically
When you get caught up in the day-to-day tasks of the job, you lose sight of the big picture.
“Taking the time each week to check in with yourself is critical for stepping back, getting out of the weeds and thinking more strategically about your work, writes Aaron Levy for Forbes.
Levy describes three ways to check in with yourself that will help you set up for the week ahead:
- Look back. Taking the time to review your calendar and to-do list of your last week can help you reflect on your accomplishments and your challenges, keeping it fresh in your mind for tasks ahead.
“For me, I complete this step by writing a note to myself in a quick journal entry. It’s a simple way to identify gaps and celebrate wins, and yet the act of getting the thoughts out of my head and onto paper helps organize my thoughts,” writes Levy.
- Look ahead. With your past week on your mind, it’s time to set the stage for the week ahead. Take the time to think through what you need to accomplish, what small and big projects are looming and who you’ll need to work with. It might be obvious, but make a plan and write it down, insists Levy.
“Put your to-do list in a place where you will see it daily and be reminded to take action. There are many applications out there to keep track of your to-dos; the idea is to find what works for you. I, for example, keep it as a simple list in a word document,” he explains.
- Prioritize. With the list of tasks written down, it’s now time to make some tough decisions. If you’re overwhelmed by what lies ahead, Levy recommends deliberately reviewing each item and either deciding to proceed, say no, delegate or delay.
- What takes priority?
- What should you be saying no to?
- What can you delegate to someone else?
- What do you have to delay?