Managing Priorities: 4 Tips for Dealing with Stress and Getting Things Done
In the following article, Lewis Daidone discusses the importance of setting priorities.
Feeling overwhelmed or run down is common in the world of accounting. Effectively dealing with stress and exhaustion can help you to become a more effective professional and avoid making mistakes; it might even save you from an early grave. Here is a list of strategies that can help you tackle difficult tasks more efficiently and thereby reduce your stress levels.
Analyze each task, and rank them in order of importance.
Just because a project is new, it doesn’t mean that everything else must be abandoned in order to address it. If you have a ranking system in place, then you can accurately assess the urgency of your tasks, and handle them accordingly.
Although this may seem obvious, it is nonetheless surprising how many accounting professionals fail to create comprehensive task lists. This is more than just creating a daily planner – draw up and actively maintain a project schedule with estimated times required for the completion of each stage.
Do not volunteer for projects that are completely out of your wheelhouse for the sole purpose of impressing senior management. There is a difference between challenging yourself, and taking on impossible responsibilities While being a “can-do” team member is important, it’s equally important to ensure that workloads are handled efficiently, responsibly, and correctly.
In high-pressure work environments, do not be too timid to advocate for yourself. Unreasonable expectations, unrealistic timelines and an overly aggressive workload must be dealt with timely and professionally. Do not be afraid to communicate in a clear and concise manner, to the powers that be, the reasons why the goals are unrealistic, the timelines improbable and the workload expectations impossible to achieve. In the end dealing with these issues up-front and honestly will prevent the stress and anxiety of dealing with these issues as the deadline approaches.