Before even opening an editor, ask yourself the following questions and write down the answers. “#1” = my planned #1 priority for the week.
- For this week, what was #1?
- What did I do this week on #1?
- Were there any big interrupts? If so, what were they, and how can my manager help?
- For next week, what is #1?
It’s easy to get lost in the details. Answering these simple questions focuses your mind on the things that really matter.
Also, for urgent issues, it makes managers happier when you regularly push out status updates to them, instead of waiting for them to pull status updates out of you. When some issue is considered especially urgent by a manager, send a 1-minute, 1-line status about it at the end of each day. Make it no longer than you could SMS or Twitter — something they could cut-and-paste into a rollup status for their own boss.