The importance of Project Deadlines

by | Business | 0 comments

Whether we like them or not, deadlines are important. Things have to get done and they have to get done on time. Having deadlines is one of the most effective ways to accomplish long term and short term goals. Creating deadlines can have a major impact on any of your future plans. While a life without deadlines may sound ideal to some people, in the end work has to be completed. Having a bunch of things hanging over our heads, with no real timeline in sight will only create stress. To be able to meet deadlines you must be a person who is very disciplined when it comes to time management. Along with being disciplined you also must have serious determination. Throughout this blog we will talk about why having deadlines is so important and how to set achievable deadlines.

From a business perspective, clients are grateful when they can trust in you and your word. They trust that you will deliver quality services on time or sometimes before a specific deadline. Meeting deadlines for your clients is not only a sign of goodwill, but it also reassures your clients that when you say you are going to do a job for them, you follow through.

The first topic we are going to cover is understanding why deadlines are so important for you as a person. Throughout this section I am going to provide you with 8 reasons for their importance.

  1. Success

First and foremost, by having a clear time frame of when things are due you are setting yourself up for success. 

  1. Deadlines help you prioritize 

The most effective way to complete tasks in order of importance is by creating certain deadlines. We all know that time is limited, so in order to make the most of your time it is important to decide what tasks are the most important. After you decide what tasks are the most important, you can then set the deadline of when to have them completed. By prioritizing you are helping yourself focus on the tasks that are going to provide you with the best outcomes. 

  1. A way to clearly define your goals

When creating deadlines, it is important to decide how long you are going to allow yourself to complete each task. By doing this you are forcing yourself to look at all the steps that are needed for each task as well as how long it will take you to complete them. Going through this thought process will provide you with a more clear view of the goals you wish to achieve. And also what exactly it takes to achieve those goals.

  1. Deadlines are the motivation to achieve your goals

Having a set date for when you want to have a task completed will help motivate you to get it done on time. If there are no deadlines in place it is easier for you to fall behind in what needs to be done. Deadlines push you to get things done on time.

  1. Help to boost creativity

Working on a tight deadline will at times require you to think outside of the box in order to complete the task. People are known to be more creative when situations force them to. Having tight deadlines is a way to help people tap into their creativity. 

  1. Helpful way to stick to your promises

Setting deadlines and carrying them out on time is going to help with keeping promises that you may have made. When all tasks have a set deadlines it is easier for you to see what you have time for and what you don’t. This will help when deciding if you are able to take on any new tasks.

  1. Deadlines help with being overly perfectionist

If there are no deadlines in place, people often spend too much time focusing on only one part of the task. Having high standards is important and should always be a top priority. But with deadlines you can help yourself avoid over analyzing and use that time elsewhere. Setting realistic deadlines will give you a balance between quality standards and time management. 

  1. Good way to boost confidence 

By constantly setting and achieving deadlines, the morale of you as well as your team will increase. Knowing that you are able to prioritize time management and get all tasks completed on time will help increase your confidence and also your self esteem. 

How to achieve the deadlines you’ve set

When setting deadlines it is important to make them achievable. If the deadlines you’ve set are not realistic, there is no way to meet them while still keeping high standards in place. Here are six ways on how to set achievable deadlines.

  1. Set SMART Goals

When you are trying to complete a goal that has a timeframe, use the SMART technique to make sure it is a realistic one. 

  • Specific: You are more likely to achieve your goals if they are specific
  • Measurable: Ensure you can measure success, make your goals trackable 
  • Achievable: Is the goal doable? Are you able to reach the goal with your skill set 
  • Relevant: Does your goal align with your companies mission
  • Time-based: Set up a time based plan
  1. Have rewards or penalties set for deadlines

Have positive consequences in place to help motivate and inspire you to meet certain deadlines. There also needs to be negative consequences in place, in case a deadline is not met. Having positive and negative consequences in place gives you more incentive to complete tasks on time.

  1. Make sure the time frame is doable 

While tight deadlines can sometimes give you more motivation and increase your creativity, setting ones that are not doable will only lead you to failure. At the same time setting loose ones can aid in downplaying how important the task actually is. It is essential to find the right balance between the two. 

  1. Don’t let fear of missing a deadline get to you

Of course setting deadlines is important, but be aware that meeting every single deadline over a long period of time is near impossible. Once you have a specific deadline in place, work as hard as you can to achieve it. While at the same time avoiding the anxiety of possibly not completing the task. The anxiety is only going to affect the quality of your work and you want to make sure you are giving high quality work. 

  1. Limit how many deadlines you have

Setting deadlines can help with organization because you have a clear timeframe to achieve your goals. But you must not overdo it. Make sure you prioritize your goals by identifying what goals need to be met within a certain time and which ones do not. Do not take on more than you can handle. After prioritizing you can then see if you are able to add anything else into your timeline.

  1. Set reminders  

Having a reminder can play a vital role in helping you meet a deadline. Add the deadline to your calendar and set a reminder for when you are a week away. By setting it for a week away, by then you should know how far you’ve gotten and how much more work you have left to do.    

Why deadlines are sometimes missed

There are times when certain deadlines are missed and one of the biggest reasons for that is something we like to call procrastination. In order to avoid procrastination it is important to treat all deadlines as sacred and crucial, they need to be seen as priorities. When the feeling of procrastination starts to peek around the corner take a moment and think about the bigger picture. Think about the impact you’ll contribute to a project if you are able to meet a specific deadline. Also take into consideration the client, the team and the major cost that went into the project if you fail to meet a deadline. By having the mindset that deadlines are crucial and everyone involved will suffer if you are late may help you stay focused. 

Earlier in this blog we talked about how you have to be disciplined if you want to meet blog deadlines. In this section we will dig a little deeper on that topic.

Ideas to consider for staying disciplined:

  • Be assertive

You must be able to say NO if appropriate, or at the very least give yourself time to look over everything before you agree to meet a certain deadline

  • Adjust your mindset

Create a positive attitude towards deadlines, instead of thinking of them as a threat. Deadlines are a great way to help you achieve your own goals that you may have been putting off

  • Don’t get PLANNING and DOING confused

It doesn’t matter how good your plan is, until you put it into action it’s nothing more than a plan

  • Use your time wisely

Keep track of your time in order to help you work more efficiently. Also do not try and multitask when you know you have certain deadlines to meet, it is not effective.

  • Understand what motivates you

It is possible that you are not a person who is inspired by deadlines. So instead consider what does motivate you. Is it doing a good job, receiving recognition or having free time to do the things that you enjoy? By meeting your deadlines you can reach all the things that motivate you. Everyone wins!

  • Make a habit of meeting deadlines

Start by adding smaller deadlines into your everyday work so when big deadlines come about you are ready to achieve them

Overall you must first understand why deadlines are important. Once you understand the reasoning behind deadlines you are one step closer to achieving them. The next step is going to be knowing how to achieve the deadlines that are set for you. And lastly if you are going to meet any deadline you must stay discipled throughout the whole process. Always remember, do not take on more than you can handle!

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