Well its finally happened. You are busy. Plenty of auditions have reaped the benefits. You now have new jobs coming in on a semi-regular basis and repeat clients appear every once in awhile for updates and regular clients are sending you scripts regularly. You. Are. Busy. Good… right?
Now How Do You Organize Your Time?
Good morning! In your email inbox is a 20 page e-learning script from a company overseas. Next are 10 on hold messages for a company on the west coast. Next is a corporate narration about 15 minutes long (finished). Finally, there is a phone IVR script. Do you organized the work according to money, loyalty, short versus long, by time zone? Who gets their finished audio files first?
First Order of Business Is Answering Those Emails.
“Thanks for your email and script. I’ll have the finished files to you by ?? o’clock.” Let’s say you’ve “triaged” by $$ and time zone and you truly like to get your finished work out to clients within 24 hours. You’ve promised the corporate narration by noon. The phone IVR files should be done by 1-ish. You have more time to do the on hold messages strictly due to the time difference. And the e-learning company’s day starts at 9pm which is 9am their time. So on hold gets done first and then the 20 pages of e-learning.
Remembering that you most likely work from home and are possibly either a mom or dad. You have to organize your personal life around your work life. Acckk. Junior calls home from school with a really bad sore throat and strep is going around the school. That’s means a Dr’s appointment TODAY.
This Is The Dilemma.
Now you’ve promised audio files by a certain time TODAY. Little Junior is sick.
Remember Scotty from Star Trek?
He wasn’t really a “miracle worker” like Kirk thought he was on a weekly basis. Years later we learned that Scotty always said fixing things would take MUCH longer, when actually he could do it in a few minutes. When he said 4 hours, he really meant 4 minutes. Wow what a miracle worker!
I think we can learn from Scotty. Now that we are busy, we don’t want to disappoint those fabulous clients. We want to send them their finished product as soon as possible. With the 24 hour deadline we set on ourselves:
- The client thinks we’re not busy.
- They wonder if they are paying too much for work that can be done so quickly.
- They expect the next work to come as quickly next time.
- If something does come up like little Junior’s strep throat, our customer service appearance looks bad when we have to inform them that we can’t meet our deadline. We look unprofessional.
I’m now promising finished work at 48 hours or more instead of “today”. Now I have a buffer for any problems that come up with Junior, a problem script, my computer, or anything else. I look more professional – I don’t have to explain family doctor appointments for late work. Often I get the work out to the client much sooner that promised. I’ve received emails that say, “Wow you’re fast, I really appreciate the effort to rush my files.” Clients really aren’t expecting to receive their finished product today, after all it took them weeks to write it and get the budget approved.
The clients are happy.
I guess I am a Miracle Worker.
That should work for design work too, nice advice 🙂
Fantastic Advice and well put, as a Dad of 3 and partner, there is alot to juggle even when the studio we built is only 20mtrs away. Thanks for the reminder, just can’t stand disappointing anyone, such a down vibe. People are serious and time is money soooo workworkwork. Remember to smell the roses now we have some extra time. Cheers.Jack
Great advice. I’m a Volunteer Firefighter, and I’ve got myself into situations on more than one occasion because I’ve promised a certain delivery and then my pager has gone off and I’ve had to respond to a call. Giving a buffer would certainly be easier than trying to explain why I’m late!
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