Whether you’re a part of creative design services or a freelancer, we’d like to remind you that regularly missing your clients’ deadlines messes up your rep and negatively affects your business. However, the sad fact is that people in the creative scene keep missing their deadlines that it has started to become a sad industry joke. Because it has become so commonplace, no one bats an eye when someone turns in their output a day late. In fact, it seems like it turned into part of the norm.
But remember, if you want to stay ahead of the competition, don’t be one of the rotten apples and act like a pro.
Here are some tips that will help you manage your schedule better.
Keeping track of one’s time is one of the weak spots and misgivings that creative types have. But if you’re a graphic artist, it may also be your safety net. Missing a deadline often roots from committing a number of errors, one of which is not allotting enough time to do your job. This is because when we get a project, we often underestimate it and think we can finish it in a jiffy.
Be realistic. Have a timeline and create a schedule which tracks how long it takes for the job to be down.
Put stages to your project. Even minor projects should be chopped down to chewable pieces. In writing this article, I started with “thinking about a topic,” followed by “what tips should I write?” before I started with “writing the article,” “proofreading” and “submitting the draft to my client.” Cutting up your work into manageable sizes help you avoid being overwhelmed. Also, it feels satisfying to tick off goals from your checklist.
If struggling to hit deadlines has been a norm for you, try adjusting the order in which you do your job. Most of us will do the easy tasks first, then struggle when it comes to doing the harder tasks or even take some time off before taking the challenge head-on. Instead of following this order, I advise that you accomplish the hard work first so that finishing off the easier tasks next will be a breeze.
When you work for a BPO or in an agency, it’s manageable to meet deadlines. You have a boss, aside from a creative director and art director, who remind you and keep tab of deadlines. But when you’re a freelancer, things may easily get out of hand. Sometimes you may even convince yourself that you are on time while you are just focused on playing online games or procrastinating.
In order for you to avoid this, you should remember to be accountable for the project assigned to you. An easy way to do this is to have an accomplice who will remind you of your pending deadlines. Or think about the consequences of not hitting the deadline. This way, you’ll feel bad about it when you go out with your friends for a bottle or two instead of doing your job.
Try following these tips and you’ll be able to hit deadlines in no time.