Armed with an obsessive love of color-coding and all things related to organization, I’m on a mission to help you maximize efficiency in your business and life so you can spend time on what matters most to you.
Equally right and left-brained, I’m that unique business owner who can think like a creative, but act like an administrator. This blog is where you’ll see me bring that dual-brained magic to life, taking the left-brain side of life and breaking it down for your right-brained self.
Batch tasking. If you’ve been around the entrepreneurial scene for a hot minute, I can pretty much guarantee you’ve heard the term.
Now, you might be wondering what batch tasking is and, the bigger question, why it’s important. Why can’t you just keep working the way you always have, hopping from task to task, with 14 different browser tabs open the whole time?
In short, batch tasking is taking like tasks and grouping them together to be completed at the same time.
Think of it like batch baking — instead of sticking three cookies in the oven, then popping in a loaf of bread, then working on a pie, then going back to the cookies again, you’d stick with the cookies until they’ve all been baked.
Batch tasking follows the same principle. Rather than shifting from task to task, you do many tasks of a similar nature all in a row, and then move on to another “batch” and do the same thing.
But is batch tasking really all it’s cracked up to be? Well, my friend, it absolutely is and today I’m sharing with you the reasons why, along with four different ways you can use batch tasking in your business (and life)!
It’s pretty common knowledge by this point that multitasking does not actually make you more productive. Studies show multitasking reduces your productivity by up to 40% when you’re consistently switching back and forth between different tasks because it takes time for your brain to catch up.
We’re trained to believe that the more we’re doing at one time, the more we’re getting done overall. It might seem that way, but that task switching means it ultimately takes longer to do multiple things at one time than if you just focused on one thing at a time.
The opposite of multitasking is single tasking, and batch tasking is one form of that. By picking one type of thing and focusing on it for a set amount of time or until it’s done, you’ll literally save yourself hours each week.
You know how it feels when you just get into a groove with something? Whether you’re writing a blog post, editing photos, or working on a client design, sometimes you just hit that perfect spot and everything flows like magic.
All the words are great, all the photo edits are great, and all the designs are great.
I don’t know about you, but I love when those groovey periods hit because I know the work I’m doing is top-notch. It might not be perfect and it will probably still need some edits or adjustments later, but I just have that feeling in my bones that what I did was good.
Chances are, every time this happens for you, it’s because you’re single tasking. You’re choosing to focus on one thing and one thing only, rather than starting one task, hopping over to another, and then coming back to whatever you were working on earlier.
Batch tasking enables you to get into that groove every single time you sit down to work. It might take a few minutes to get into that rhythm and headspace, but after a little while, you’re knocking out emails left and right, writing blog posts like nobody’s business, and on the whole not just working faster, but working better.
There was a running joke between some friends of mine and I about my photos.
You see, every year, right around the same time, I would suddenly realize that I hadn’t done anything with my photos from the previous 12 months other than post a super small percentage of them on Instagram.
So once a year, I’d have a major photo editing session, process everything, and then upload an entire year’s worth of photos.
The reason this happened every single year? Because photos weren’t something on my radar on a regular basis, which means they fell through the cracks.
But once I introduced a Monthly Duty Day into my life, that stopped happening. I gathered all those other random but important things that needed to be done on a monthly basis and set aside a time to knock them all out, one by one, and they stopped falling through the cracks.
Batch tasking helps more than just the random things fall through the cracks, too. By batching your tasks together, it allows you to get into a rhythm from week to week, and because you’re not switching back and forth between different things, you don’t lose your focus and potentially miss something important.
Hopefully by this point I’ve convinced you why batch tasking should be a part of your business, but you might be wondering how to start batch tasking.
Batch tasking can look different for every person, particularly from business to business, but there are a few principles that will work for most everyone.
Probably the most common way to batch task is by task or category.
This would mean taking something like content writing, social media management, or email responses and setting aside a designated time to knock out everything in your inbox, write all your blog posts for the month, or prep all your social media for the week.
I do this for all of my work, from client tasks and content writing to brainstorming and social media interaction.
Depending on the type of business you run, batching by client, project, or event may work better than batching by task or category.
If you’re a wedding planner, for example, you might set aside a block of time one day to work on several different kinds of tasks, but all for one wedding and do the same thing the next day for a different type of wedding.
This allows you to only focus on one major thing (ie. that couple’s big day) at one time, rather than having to flip back and forth between details for a bunch of different couples.
For those more random tasks, batching by a certain interval like week or month works well.
This works great for tasks that need to be done on a regular basis, like weekly or monthly, so they don’t slip through the cracks. Instituting a Monthly or Weekly Duty Day allows you to gather all those weekly or monthly tasks together, set aside a couple of hours, and knock them out all at once so they’re done and you don’t have to worry about them again until next week or month.
The final way to batch task is by day, which is something that can actually be combined with other forms of batch tasking as well.
You do this by giving each day an overarching theme like marketing, client work, or administrative stuff and handle only tasks related to that particular theme on that day. This is especially helpful when considering the way your schedule, energy levels, and focus ebb and flow throughout the week. And within your batched days, you can still batch individual tasks.
Have you ever batched your tasks or days? If so, how did it help your business? I’d love to hear!
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