Ahead of the Curve
How to Beat Procrastination by Planning Ahead
“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” — Paul J. Meyer
Let’s be honest; we’ve all been guilty of procrastination. We opt to get things done in the nick of time, even when we know preparation is the sensible course of action. It’s as human as breathing or drinking water, but it doesn’t have to be.
As an installer, most of your efforts happen in the moment. So at times, it may seem unnecessary to plan ahead for an installation. But that’s not the case. If you talk to our most reliable Installers, they’ll all tell you the same thing. An installation begins long before you enter the client’s home, so procrastination is never an option.
The Consequences of Procrastination
You may assume that the effects of procrastination are minimal or even non-existent. But an installer who makes a habit of last-minute work will likely experience several negative consequences. Don’t believe me? Here’s some of what may happen.
1. Diminished Quality of Work
The first, and most obvious, effect of procrastination is your work begins to decline. When you're not prepared for an installation, all sorts of mistakes can occur, whether it’s not following the design or forgetting the proper equipment.
2. More Service Orders
From poor quality of work stems several other consequences, including more service orders. When an installation isn’t up to par, clients will often expect you to amend your mistakes. So if you’d like to avoid returning to an installation, preparation is key.
3. Lost Time & Wages
Another negative effect of procrastination is a loss of hours and wages. If you continuously push tasks off, your employer will take notice—there’s no doubt about it. And ultimately, if you’re wages begin to dwindle, procrastination has a direct impact on your liveliness.
4. Increased Stress
Many of the consequences thus far have been personal: your work diminishes, you have to correct mistakes, and you lose wages. But the fact is, procrastination affects everyone involved. Whether it's you, the client, or the company as a whole, not planning ahead can induce stress on every front.
5. Damaged Professional Reputation
If you earn the reputation of a procrastinator, it can have a lasting impact on your career. Not only will you jeopardize your current position, but it may also affect your ability to find future employment. And to make matters worse, your actions (or lack thereof) may damage the reputation of your company.
How to Avoid Procrastination
At this point, you get it; putting off responsibilities can be detrimental for Installers. Luckily, however, there are ways to avoid procrastination and its many consequences—most of which involve preparation. Here are some tips to get you started.
1. Check Your Email Twice a Day
Staying on top of your email is the first step to fighting procrastination. In doing so, you're constantly aware of any changes to your assignment—location, design, or other logistics. To effectively monitor your email, we suggest checking it twice a day—once in the morning before your commute and once in the evening.
2. Review Your Schedule Ahead of Time
As an Installer, your schedule tells you everything you need to know, including job locations, comments for the Installer, and designs. That's why it's essential to review your schedule for the upcoming week on Thursday when jobs are dispatched. This is a surefire way to escape the clutches of procrastination.
3. Clarify Questions & Concerns Beforehand
After reviewing your schedule for the week ahead, reach out to your Market Manager or Coordinator to clarify any questions or concerns. In doing so, you can avoid waiting until you've started an installation to resolve any issues.
4. Prepare Your Tools & Supplies
Tools and supplies make everything you do as an installer possible. That's why it's critical to ensure your equipment is up to par and ready to go the day before an installation. If you wait until the last minute, you run the risk of showing up unprepared for your project.
5. Establish Deadlines for Goals
A great way to beat procrastination is to break an installation into smaller attainable goals. Furthermore, you should establish deadlines to finish each task within. This way you can easily track your progress and recognize if you're falling behind schedule.