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5 Tips on getting Organised

5 Tips on getting Organised

Sometimes it feels like everything comes all at once and you can get nothing done, then the stress sets in!  I’ve picked up different tricks and tips over the years to help get better organised, here’s the 5 that make the biggest difference!

Just do it

This is effectively dealing with a task, an email, call or chore before it ends up on a list.  I think we all have one don’t we, the list of things that are all a priority and all need doing, yesterday!

Here’s a great way to deal with these kinds of things, just do it!  Washing up needs doing? Just do it!  Need to reply to an email?  Just do it!  How about calling a loved one you haven’t spoken to in a while? Just do it!

It takes a bit of mental training to get the hang of this, putting things off is a common human trait, a habit which you have to break out of and when you do you’ll find you have so much more time and a real sense of achievement too!

Clear out the clutter

If you have moved as many times as I have in the last two years, you become quite good at this however having a good clear out shouldn’t be reserved to just when you relocate.

Whether you run a busy office, work from home or just trying to keep on top of things around the family, keeping clear and tidy encourages a much more productive environment.

How many boxes of ‘stuff’ do you have in the office?  Is there a cupboard you keep everything in that doesn’t have a home?  Is the shed slowly starting to bulge at the seams?  It’s time to sort out the clutter, I tend to work on the basis that if it hasn’t been used in 6 months it’ll never get used but you decide what the time frame should be, just don’t make it too long!

What I end up with tends to be two piles, one for the local skip or recycling bin and a larger one for the charity shop.  Even clothes that are beyond wear can be used by charity shops who can sell them on as rags to be recycled by other companies!

Plan ahead

If you’re starting a special project, perhaps a show, an exhibition, a big order for a customer or a road trip with friends, a good thing to start with is to draw up a plan.

Don’t worry about becoming Mr or Miss clipboard, having an idea of what you need to do and by when is just a simple way of reducing stress.  Plans can change however so be prepared to adapt with them.

When I receive an new enquiry I follow the same plan every time, I think about what I want to achieve, how I want to do it and when these things should be done by.  Do you travel to clients addresses?  Write up a list of things you always take and have that handy for each time you go, you can do the same when you go on holiday and if you don’t have a list make one! Just do it!

Go through your plan the night before, visualise each task or part of your day and mentally check off everything you need to have a successful day!

Keep a ‘Todo’ list

Keeping a to-do list will help you get things done, plain and simple.  It’ll also help you prioritise the tasks you need to complete too!

Why keep a todo list? It’l just be another thing to do! – It’s best not to think of todo lists as a chore, something dragging you down, quite the opposite, it’s like having a personal assistant if done right!

A to-do list, doesn’t forget! Need to prepare for the 9:00am meeting, no problem! Need to buy some more light bulbs, a to-do list will remind you! Thanks!

A to-do list will also help you prioritise, need to get cash out before buying the light’s? Sometimes we get stuck getting things done because there are so many things to do it’s difficult to work out what to do and when.  Prioritising will help you achieve everything!

I’m a huge fan of to-do list’s, I use a website called Todoist and honestly I couldn’t live without it.  It’s an extension of my work and home life, I’m more productive and happier having achieved something each day.  3 of many features I use on a regular basis are the ability to schedule tasks, assign tasks to other users like family and friends who share projects and set reminders that trigger when I arrive at a specific location!

Make time for yourself

One of the most important tips that I can think of, make sure you give yourself a break, make time for yourself!

If you’re busy clearing out old boxes and cupboards, reacting to the daily to-do’s, planning for meetings and maintaining a project or to-do list when will you ever have time to rest, relax or even eat!

Make sure you find time to just be, put the phone on airplane mode, tune out for a bit, meditate even.  Stress is a productivity killer and can easily pull everything you’ve worked towards apart, so do yourself a favour and treat yourself to some quality time!

Share your tips!

These tips have worked well for me but everyone is different.  Do you think you could try any of the one’s I shared or perhaps you have some great organisational tips you could share?

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5 Reasons why you should have a great headshot

5 Reasons why you should have a great headshot

It is well documented that we are in the digital age right now, customers flocking online to research and find out more about you and your company before they commit to buy or even before they contact you.  If you and your business have an online presence, it’s vital to get that first impression right.  So I’m going to share 5 reasons why you should have a great headshot!

[bctt tweet=”What does your profile pic say about you? Here’s 5 reasons why you should change it!” via=”no”]

1. What do you look like?

Have you ever attended a meeting, course, conference or even lunch and had no idea what your contact looked like?  Or worse still, not recognised them immediately because their Twitter profile photograph is of them on the beach with sunglasses on?  Without someone introducing you, for example a mutual business partner or receptionist, how will your clients recognise you?

2. Are you even real?

You have less chance of connecting with a prospective client online with the stock “no image” or your own company logo than you would if you have a professional headshot.  This is because since the dawn of social media, we have been bombarded with spam accounts and fake followers.  This leads nicely on to the next reason why you should have a great headshot!

3.  Can I trust you?

I spoke earlier about the first impression, we want to get this right so that our connections will trust us, that we are genuine, honest and that we deliver.  How many social media accounts have you passed up on because their image was taken at a social occasion, blatantly out of date, on holiday?  I have personally seen professional LinkedIn accounts where an individual has used an old infant photograph.  What message does that put out there for you?

[bctt tweet=”People buy people, no one will purchase from a cartoon character or abstract logo so why use them for your Brand?” via=”no”]

4. Where else can I find you?

Person branding is important for tying your web presence all together.  That’s not to say that all your social media accounts need to be exactly the same, but they all need to be shot around the same time and be consistent in appearance.  There is a higher chance of a connection following you on Twitter, automatically adding you on other networks, simply because they found your profile image elsewhere.  If they have searched for you on Google, and trust me they will, Google will present them with images and in turn, they will link to other pages you appear on.  Consistency is key!

 

5. Can I use your image?

Finally, you never know when someone is going to ask you for a professional headshot to feature you or highlight your organisation, so it’s just a good idea to have one on hand!

If you’re looking for the official word on what’s appropriate, LinkedIn have published their guidelines on ensuring you are seen in the right light, you can read it here.  So they are my 5 top reasons, can you think of any?  Whats the best and the worse you’ve seen? (not naming names!)

Creating the right image for your CV & Professional Network

Creating the right image for your CV & Professional Network

You are your own shop window for your career prospects, so in an age where your professional history is available at the click of a website, it’s vital that your online networking CV show you in your best light.

[bctt tweet=”Business headshots, there are a 100 ways to get it wrong, here are 5 ways you can get it right!” username=”AJFarrimond”]

I’d always recommend hiring a professional photographer, as time and money invested in your approach, will encourage employers to want to invest time and money in you. So how to start? Here are my five top tips:

Write a brief for your photographer

Before the day of the shoot, It will be important to make sure that your photographer knows as much about your expected outcomes as possible. What type of industry do you wish to work in? A corporate image will require different lighting and background to a more informal setting.

Dress like you already have the job

Clothing and mannerisms give HR Managers instant cues as to whether they feel a candidate is a good cultural fit for a job. Take time to think about your outfit for your photo shoot and think about how you want to stand, sit, lean. Your photographer will guide you on all of this and put you at ease, but it’s good to have an idea in mind of how you wish to be portrayed.

Don’t be too fashionable

Fashion moves so quickly, yet you might want to keep your professional photographs for a number of years. This is why I would recommend keeping clothing and accessory fairly neutral, along with hairstyles and makeup that might look out of place within the next few years

Wear the right shoes (or none at all)

Again, this is something that your photographer will guide you on, but wearing uncomfortable shoes will have an awkward knock-on effect through your entire body when posing, especially if you are a bit nervous! Try and feel as comfortable as possible, relax and enjoy the time being photographed.

Don’t be afraid to ask!

If you have an idea of how you wish to stand, or a certain location you want to use, make sure you suggest it to the photographer for their expert input. The outcome of any professional shoot should leave you with a product you’ll be proud to use, and this is always the result of teamwork between the photographer and client.

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