Time Management Tips for Overwhelmed Dental Accountants
For most people in the dental accounting field, becoming overwhelmed as a result of the workday is a regular experience. Some thrive off of on-the-job stress and balance it with exercise and healthy eating, while others succumb to the pressure and may even find themselves switching careers due to “burnout.” The fact is, however, managing stress is hard, but it’s far from impossible, and it all starts with placing more focus on time management.
Dealing with time management issues? You’re not alone. Here are a few tips to help steer you in the right direction, all of which will make you a better dental accountant.
1. Live By Your Calendar
Between payroll, vendor meetings and everything in-between, most dental accountants find themselves juggling with a number of appointments, events and reminders on a weekly, if not daily basis. The idea that all of this could live inside someone’s head without eventually getting lost in the ether is simply unrealistic, which is where the modern calendar comes in. Paper calendars are a thing of the past—digital calendars can be shared, provide automatic reminders and are otherwise invaluable for today’s accounting professionals.
2. Track Your Time
Chances are you’re already tracking time in one way or another, but when was the last time you actually took out a stopwatch? While tracking time is good practice in and of itself, it can become even better practice by analyzing it thoroughly and getting a better sense of exactly how long it takes you to perform certain tasks. This way, you can avoid tricking yourself into thinking you have time for something when you really don’t, which can help keep you out of a number of stressful situations.
3. Prioritize Tasks
When you get to work each day, it’s important to take a moment to mentally plot-out what the next eight hours will look like. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself staring at a list of things to do, with no idea of what order to actually do them in. Take each task and break it down into a time-based “chunk,” which will allow you to piece together your day like a puzzle, placing the most important and urgent pieces up front. Remember that if you have a deadline in the afternoon, now’s not the time to start planning for the next quarter or researching new vendor opportunities. When you don’t know what to do, do the work in front of you.
Time management issues can be crippling, but only if allowed to get out of hand. Put the effort into better managing your time, and you’ll be rewarded with peace of mind.