10 Things You Should Do Right the First Time

The Difference Between Doing Something and Doing It Right is Usually Seconds

10_Things_You_Should_Do_Right_the_First_Time

Ever do a task, and then have to do it again a short time later?

Why? Because you didn’t do it right the first time.

You left it half-done. You didn’t put it away. Or you didn’t give it your full effort.

The difference between doing something and doing it right is usually only a few seconds.

Doing Your Tasks More Than Once

No one likes doing more work than they need to, especially if it means doing the same task more than once.

Yet, that’s often what happens when you don’t do something right the first time.

You have to do it again later. Or perhaps, you even create more work for yourself later because you have to figure out where you left off.

Here are 10 Things That Are Quicker Done Right the First Time:

  1. Putting Things Away – Most items take only a few moments to put away. Yet, we leave them out. Do that a few times, and suddenly you have a much bigger mess to clean up. Take the few seconds and put things away when you are done with them.
  2. Finishing a Task to Done – You almost complete a task. You take it to 99% done. But, then you leave it undone. Why? Take the few extra steps to finish it to done.
  3. Cleaning Up – There is a big difference in doing the dishes right after dinner, and doing them the next morning. This simple analogy applies to most clean up jobs. Don’t create more work for yourself by putting off the clean up.
  4. Throwing Things AwayWhen in doubt, throw it out. That is a good motto to help prevent clutter buildup. Don’t keep things “just because you might need them again.” If they don’t serve a definite purpose then you are better off disposing of them.
  5. Preparing for a Meeting – How many meetings have you gone to only to discover that the organizer isn’t ready for the meeting? Before a meeting is held, make sure that all preparations are done. This includes the basics like booking a room, distributing materials (in advance!), and setting an agenda. Too many meetings end up creating secondary meetings because the first one wasn’t done right.
  6. Filing Paperwork – Paper continues to be one of the biggest disorganization issues most people face. It piles up so fast it seems like it is multiplying. Yet, if you file that piece of paper when you get, you won’t end up with piles on your desk. It could be as simple as putting it in a file, or scanning it, or throwing it away. (See #4)
  7. Addressing Bad Behavior – Don’t let poor behavior go unchecked. Whether it is sub-par performance or simply bad conduct, the longer it continues the more damage it does. Address bad behavior right the first time it happens, and you can avoid a repeat pattern from developing.
  8. Responding to Email – How many times do you open an email only to close it and leave it in your inbox? Don’t fall into this half-done trap. Answer it, file it, or delete. Otherwise, don’t bother reading your email.
  9. Saying No – If you clearly “Say No,” you won’t be forced to continue making up excuses later. Instead, of saying you can’t because of so-and-so, just directly Say No at the start.
  10. Fixing Something that is Broken – How often do you put up with something that doesn’t work? Not only do “broken” items waste time, they can be dangerous when safety is involved. When something is broken… fix it.

Don’t Waste Time Doing It Twice

Don’t spend time doing the same tasks over because you half-did them the first time.

Instead, have the discipline to complete them. Finish tasks, put things away, and clean up when you are done.

Do things right the first time, and you won’t have to do it again later.

Question: What tasks do you find yourself doing more than once that could have been avoided had they been done right the first time? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Invest just 10 minutes a day toward the right ideas, behaviors and strategies to finally be more productive at work…so you can spend less time there! 31 Days, 31 Ways: Daily Tips for Time Management Mastery is my time management course, containing 31 powerful daily lessons and 31 actionable exercises designed to help you take action, reduce stress, and reclaim your time. Click here to learn more.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Awesome 10 tips.

    Loved it.

    Saying “NO” is the big time saver. Most of us are hard wired to say “YES” or reply something positively. We love to help.

    However saying “NO” whenever we can’t put the both parties in good position.

    Also, taking action on the emails is the big thing in today’s world. Most of the open it, to only mark it as unread for some time later.

    Instead we should habituate ourselves to take actions, it saves time, no double work.

    Stay awesome buddy. 🙂

  • I agree one time through is all you really need. I like your mention of addressing bad behavior instead of gossiping. This really is more than a concept, but a virtue which reciprocates respect.

    Saying “No”, is a tough one. It is all relative to where you are at, where you want to go, and whether the opportunity coincides with your vision.

    I wrote a fast post post recently regarding how to create your vision in a succinct way. It surely can be difficult at times to form, however it is essential for success.

    http://www.wellbeingme.com/core-vision

  • Pingback: 15 Ways to Work Smarter Not Harder & Be More Productive - FormaspaceOffice()

  • Pingback: If You Need To Do It, Do It Right The First Time For Productivity - Debbie Rodrigues()