Monday, April 7, 2008

Mastering the task - one bite at a time

One of my favorite mentors in my life used to remind me when I was overwhelmed with a task at hand: "How do you eat an elephant Sarah? One bite at a time".

I'm sure that quote belongs to another person and forgive me please for not citing the correct author, but I do relate to the quote. I get overwhelmed as often as my clients do, but I try to pick the most important tasks and concentrate on the task at hand instead of something I "should be" doing. There will always be lots of work to do and we are all very busy people. One way to keep moving forward is to continue to master our software to learn easier ways to do the tasks at hand.

How to you master your software? One new task at a time, for example:


  • Begin adding or organizing items - one hour per week
  • Begin using just one additional billing method - this month
  • Merge vendors (customers, items, accounts) that are duplicates - 4 per week
  • Attend Success in-Formation Free On line Q & A Session each month with a list of questions to ask - 90 min per month.
American Contractor:
  • Begin using T & M Invoicing for one job this month - read help next Tuesday.
  • Begin using Info Center by scanning in AP Invoices for just one job - starting on the 15th.
  • Add your daily/weekly tasks to Fast Access in Command Center - one time, next Friday morning
  • Schedule Night Auditor this month to reindex every Tuesday night - Schedule it tomorrow (takes 5 minutes to schedule it - read help for more info)


  • Name your saved files in a consistent fashion - begin today as often as you can.
  • Organize your folders on a shared folder/eliminate duplicates in just one folder - 15 minutes each Wednesday after lunch.
  • Schedule an automatic backup or contact a remote backup company this month so you don't have to worry about loosing data.
  • Learn to connect to the office remotely - this month.

Microsoft Word:

  • Make your tables attractive using Styles - one table at a time as you need them.
  • Learn about QuickParts by reading help and creating one. - Next Friday afternoon.
  • Add a commonly used document to your templates - this week.

Microsoft Outlook:

  • Add a tag line about your business to your signature line - change monthly on the 10th of each month
  • Delete your junk mail folder- once per week, glance at the emails quickly for non-junk, then delete.
  • Categorize your contacts into logical categories to find contacts quickly-create or clean up one category per week.
  • Add above tasks to Outlook to remind you, over time, you will be happy you did them, they will make your life easier in the long run.

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