January 24, 2011
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It is January, the time many of us take stock, look around and examine the year behind and the year ahead. Not for nothing was the Roman god Janus from whom we take the name depicted with two faces, one looking forwards and one looking back.
Project Management can be a powerful tool for taking control of our work and becoming more organised and therefore more productive. We can identify slack time and build in extra tasks. We stay two steps ahead and anticipate problems, identifying and implementing solutions before they hit. We can stay calm and focussed.
For freelancers, using Project Management to organise our workflow can lead to new opportunities that we didn’t think possible. If we begin to see our whole lives as a series of tasks and blocks of time to be organised and arranged, we are able to identify the slack time in our lives as a whole where we may have room for growth.
Many freelancers work from home with non-specified hours; we don’t have to worry about putting in the ‘face time’ many office workers have to. Working on a project basis means that we work to each task: once the task is done we move onto the next one. This can be a very efficient way of working.
While we have hours in the day when we are typically more productive, we may have other hours which would be put to better use doing something different. If we see these as slack time, we can build in other, non-work, projects. Education, fitness, social… it’s up to us. As long as we manage them like we would every other project, there’s no reason why we can’t fit in some extra-curricular activities in the times when our office-based colleagues would be chatting at the water-cooler, surfing the internet or even commuting. Maybe we can work later to compensate if we need to.
Freelancers can make the most of not being tied to the standard work day and start to think outside the 9-5 box.