We have looked in the past at starting the day with a bang, and this is something which will get you off to a great start and go a long way to ensuring that you get a lot out of your day at work. However, what about ending your day with a bang as well?
I sometimes travel home at the end of the day with some regrets about not having taken full advantage of my time in the office. There are some days in which I feel that I haven’t gotten very far or, even worse, have gone backwards. To avoid this happening I would suggest trying to end your days with a bang whenever you have the energy to do so. The following are a few suggestions for doing so.
Do Tomorrow’s Most Difficult Task Today
If there is one thing I hate seeing more than anything else when I tidy up my desk at the end of day it is a note for something difficult which I need to do the following day. It can ruin my evening if I realise that I have to, for example, carry out a tough conversation with an unhappy stakeholder early the next morning. If I can muster up the energy to do this at the end of the day then I know that it will make my next day a whole lot easier. If you are the sort of person who gets into a good rhythm during the day then it makes sense for you to use the momentum you build up to let you carry out a few tough tasks towards the end of the day. It can be easier to do this than try and do it from a starting start in the morning. Also, if you do it just now then you will stay in control of the situation rather than run the risk of someone contacting you to get it done when you least expect it.
Speak to the Team
The last half hour or so of the day is a great time to pull together your team together for a short chat. If it has been a tough day then you might find them rather tired and emotional at this time. What I like to do at this time of day is get in a round of coffees and just sit down with everyone for an informal chat. If you are finding it difficult to get the team members to open up and discuss the project then you might find that this time of day is perfect for getting them to do so. It can also be a find time to work out what needs done the next day and pull together some sort of action plan. Some project managers like to go a step further and carry out this informal meeting in a local bar or some other place where everyone can relax more.
Leave the Best Until Last
I often find that by the last hour or so of the day my productivity levels have gone way down. This means that if I am left with a tough task the chances are that I will go round in circles and not get it finished. I don’t like to leave unfinished pieces of work on my desk for the following days but sometimes it is easier to just admit that I will do it a lot more quickly in the morning than just now. Anyway, a better solution than going through all of this to-ing and fro-ing is to do the tougher tasks earlier on in the day. This also means that you can give yourself the pleasure of leaving the best piece of work for the end of the day. It can be a great feeling to finish your working day with something which it is enjoyable to do.
Enjoy Some Quiet Reflection Time
Some pieces of project work are so hectic and intense that they don’t give you time to reflect on how far you have come so far. This is something which it is nice to do every now and then and it is likely to leave you with a warm feeling inside when you see how much progress has been made. It is fantastic to go home thinking that you are doing a great job and looking forward to going back to work the next day to carry on with the project you are working on.