The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.” – Amelia Earhart
One of the things I have become pretty good at (not quite perfect, but I try) is following through on commitments. I always strive to get back to people and get things done as quickly as possible and to do what I say I am going to do. For me, it is easier to give an answer right away, make the phone call or schedule a date as soon as possible rather than leaving things in limbo or potentially forgetting.
One of the keys to following through, for me, is keeping a list. I use a style similar to the bullet journal which my sister introduced me to a year ago. It is a homemade version of the Franklin Covey system. Even though I have a good memory, I find that it is easy to get distracted and forget. Writing thinks on my to do list insures they get done.
Every morning, I go back through the previous day’s list to make sure that whatever is still hanging out there gets done. I find my biggest frustration is waiting on other people. In the age of email, texting, and other instant communications it is amazing to me how many people procrastinate and put things off. I understand people are busy. There are days when I have back to back meetings and I barely have time to breathe, but I can’t imagine every day is that way.
Getting in the habit of answering people right away has made my job actually easier. If something does not have to get flagged for follow up or go on my to do list it is a win for me. I used to have a saying posted on the wall in a retail store I managed that said something to the effect of…”If you don’t have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it right?” The less touches I have to give something on my list, the better.
I want to encourage others to develop the habit of answering quickly and following through as soon as possible. For those of us who organize events, this means don’t wait until the morning of the event to RSVP. If you are waiting to see if something better will come along, well then…
People appreciate when you get back to them quickly. It shows them they are important and you care.