Life in a legal team is never mundane. Something is always up: a client might bombard you with queries or question how you are handling a legal document that you need to file hours before the deadline or, you may get stuck getting approvals or, cannot locate the contract when it is needed.
Even though juggling many tasks at once can be exciting, it can also be very difficult to accomplish them all on time.
If you feel overburdened all the time, and cannot seem to achieve your goals, you might want to consider these productivity hacks that will help you and your team increase efficiency many folds.
So let us learn these 9 productivity tips!
1. Make to-do lists
A to-do list is essential if you're going to stay on top of your workload. Keeping a realistic and feasible to-do list will help you stay organized and help you remember deadlines. Setting a fixed time aside for planning your to-do list is recommended. Otherwise, since there is so much to do, it is easy to waste too much time planning instead of doing it.
Focus on only a few critical tasks, and rate them in terms of should, must, and can. Break down your project into accomplishable tasks. Your to-do list should contain short, concrete items that can be accomplished in one day.
Most importantly, remember that a to-do list can help you only if you stick to it.
2. Manage time effectively
Sometimes during the day, no matter how much we try to focus, we just cannot think clearly, and thus take much more time than we wanted to for completing that task. Typically, this happens to some people after lunch or during busy office hours.
The mind is more productive at certain times of the day than at others. This is valuable time, so make sure that you utilize it. Consider scheduling your most difficult or time-consuming tasks during that time of day. Easy tasks that do not require much attention during the day can be scheduled for other times.
In this way, you can use the same hours of the day much more efficiently without mental overload.
3. Use Kanban board
The only equipment you'll need is a whiteboard, a pen, and post-it notes. Identify each stage in the progression of the case in columns. Put a post-it note next to each case name. The post-its will be moved to the correct columns as the cases progress. The areas where the masses are stuck are those that require focus.
A clear representation of your office's caseload process can help you identify and eliminate the bottlenecks that reduce your productivity. Sometimes, it takes a long time to end negotiations and to start the case, or to process fee agreements and expert reports. Kanban board will help you keep track of the case more efficiently.
4. Establish a communication flow and schedule
In a legal team, you have to communicate with clients and your colleagues for reviews. To maintain efficiency and productivity, it is necessary to establish clear communication procedures and manage the flow of messages. Setting aside time blocks to respond to emails, messages, and calls will keep distraction to a minimum, and you will be able to focus on the tasks at hand.
Blocking multiple periods of 30 minutes each would be a good idea for responding to people. You can clearly define at what point of case you will be communicating with the concerned party or team member. It will save both your and everybody else’s energy.
5. Do not multitask
Despite the perception that multitasking is a great way to handle a lot of things at once, research has shown that our brains are far from adept at handling multiple tasks as we might imagine. Several studies indicate that multitasking can reduce productivity by affecting comprehension, attention, and performance levels.
As a result, multitasking reduces your accuracy and makes you more likely to make mistakes. Take one task at a time, devote your full attention to it, and then move to another. It will make work more enjoyable and will also allow you to perform better.
6. Learn your tools better
It is important to know the hacks of the tools you use on a daily basis so that you can enhance your productivity. If you know how to use them better, your job will get easier and you'll save time as well.
Professional office tools are generally included with many time-saving shortcuts. No matter how experienced you are with them, there is a high probability there are some useful features that you have not discovered yet.
You can take classes or watch videos on the internet for such tutorials.
You can take up courses, read articles or watch videos on the internet for such tutorials.
7. Divide complex tasks into manageable steps
Break up your complex assignments, projects, and cases into small actionable tasks. For example, If you have a long, complicated task that you are not eager to get started, especially if you have a lot on your plate, procrastination is easy as there are always reasons to put off the big, tricky assignment at hand. Dividing into smaller tasks will give you better confidence in yourself and also decrease your resistance towards your task.
Smaller tasks make it easier to work on a complicated project. Making this your habit could help improve your workflow.
8. Maintain positive work culture
Employees who work in an environment with a good culture are more likely to work together, have higher morale, be more productive, and be more likely to stay within the company. As a result, job satisfaction, collaboration, and work performance improve. In addition, a positive work environment reduces psychological pressure on employees.
You can read more about do’s and don’ts for creating a healthy environment. Companies can encourage others to create positive work cultures by rewarding those who are contributing. With a positive work environment, the quality of your work will always shine through.
9. Use a contract workflow platform, like InkPaper to streamline the process.
Automating the contract management process with a workflow platform makes it easier. InkPaper saves time and effort in the contract workflow from drafting a contract right to reviewing, negotiating, signing, and storing it securely. The cloud-based storage and e-signature functionality of such platforms make contract management easy.
InkPaper helps you in decreasing the number of hours spent on e-mailing versions of contracts, waiting for approvals, and collaborating one- by one with people. It allows you to have a centralized storage system where the whole team can collaborate simultaneously and accelerate the whole process.
A contract workflow platform directly saves you a great deal of time that you can use to do more profitable tasks.
Get started with InkPaper today.
Applying these 9 hacks will help you become more efficient and improve your mental health by reducing work stress. Try converting them into your habits and also encourage your team to try these. Remember the 21|90 rule.
‘The 21/90 rule states that it takes 21 days to make a habit and 90 days to make it a permanent lifestyle change.’
A healthy and efficient team always works better and drives greater success.