© Gaye Wilson 2008
A system? Not a system! I can’t use systems!

Yes, you can. Systems are invaluable for getting stuff done. They are especially important when you are working to a deadline. They help you plan the project, they tell you what still needs to be done, and they tell you what to do next.

For instance, for the editing project I’ve been talking about in this series (I finished the project, by the way, on time, and the client was ecstatic with my work), my system was:

  • Print out all emails pertaining to the project
  • Start a file for everything related to the project
  • Keep track (see this post)
  • Use checklists
  • File all the stuff when the project is done so that I can refer to it again if necessary (for instance, if the client wants changes or disputes what we’ve agreed, or if I have a similar project in the future). 

Without the system, I don’t know where I’m up to, and I don’t know what is still to be done. Having everything in hard copy in the one place I find is much better than having to boot up my computer to find stuff.

The beauty of this is that, once you’ve figured out a system to get a particular task done, you can use that system again and again for similar tasks. Tweak the system as you go, so that it is the best system for you.

Studies have shown that people who use systems get more done.

So what systems can you come up with?