When establishing your business, you may forget how to do different steps for a particular job. It’s OK. You are doing a lot so you are bound to forget. To help you remember better, make a task list for each process that isn’t done often.
What task lists should be created?
Some examples of task lists are quarterly estimated taxes process, emailing customers reminders about upcoming services, working on social media engagement jobs, and creating blog posts.
Why make a task list for my sole proprietor business?
Making a list will allow you to recognize different steps that need improving. There could even be tasks that need eliminating altogether because they are redundant. When you perfect your task list, you will find that it is easy to hand it off to another person to do. Wouldn’t that be nice?
But wait. You can’t hand off the task just yet. You need to create your task list. So, to make a useful procedure list for your start-up, make sure you follow these tips below.
Seven tips on how to make task lists for your small business.
- When writing a list of tasks, visualize step by step what needs completing. As you write down the first step, ask yourself, “what is the next step?”. Visually see yourself doing each step. Make note of all the little details of the different steps when going through the process of writing it down.
- Use a bullet list for easy instruction. You can set this type of list in Microsoft Word or Excel. I prefer Microsoft OneNote because it allows me to share the list with others easily and I can leave it in OneDrive. Note: If you have the office package on your computer, you probably have OneNote. If you don’t have the Microsoft Office(affiliate) package, Evernote does the same thing. Want to read more about the different things OneNote has to offer, visit my review post here.
- Make each task specific. Every step in your task list needs to be as accurate as possible. For example, instead of writing, “Do the bills,” write down, “Pay (name of payee) bill online.” This will help you determine how much time it will take you to do a step. Some steps may involve different substeps in it so making it clear will help you manage your time better.
- Have someone else review your task lists. If you have more than one person that needs to see this shared list, using Microsoft OneNote or Evernote will help because you can invite others to view and edit the task lists. Also, it is good to have fresh eyes on the list to make sure you did not overlook something.
- Be flexible and move around tasks as needed. As you write the steps, you may see that a task is out of order and needs removing or placing it at a different part of the process. By using an app or desktop software, you can easily rearrange the tasks quickly. Not all task lists are in the proper order on the first try.
- Bold the main topics of a particular task list, so they stand out. If your task list has main and subtasks, you may need to divide the task accordingly. Making deposits task list is an example of a task list that has main and subtask steps. First, you need to write “make mobile deposits using the bank account”. Then, your subtasks would include the different steps in the app to make the deposit. Then, the second main step could be added the deposit to QuickBooks. The subtasks to this would be the steps you would take in QB to do this task. Sub-steps help keep the list specific but also complete without creating one huge long list. This also allows you to stop at the end of the subtask if you can not finish the subtask right then. Indenting on your task list to indicate the subtask from the main task works nicely.
- Review your task lists a few times before starting the steps. Go through and read over the tasks and subtasks. Visualize each step again. See if you missed any steps and added them. The more detailed your project is, the more likely you will need to revise the task list a few times.
Above all else, be sure to stay calm. You will get through the process. No need to judge yourself. You are doing the best you can for being a one-person business owner.
I hope this helps you get your tasks completed. If you need help making these task lists, contact me or other professionals that can help you pinpoint the steps that need to be done in your specific process.
Let’s continue the conversation, what part of the task list process stops you from continuing? Please leave a comment below.
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