Top 10 tips to make you more productive

Friday, 17 January 2020

We regularly hear from our dairy farmers that lack of time is one of the biggest limiting factors to embracing best practice and making improvements, and prevents people from getting away from the farm. Time is precious but we can’t buy more of it, so it's vital to make the most of the time we do have.

We all have the same number of hours in a day, yet some people seem to be able to fit more in – how is this possible? In response, we have collected some Time Management Tips from dairy farmers up and down the country to help you make the most of your time, both on and off the farm!

So we’re setting the challenge to make improving time management your New Year’s resolution, and will be sharing #TimeTips weekly throughout January and February to help keep you on track.

Here are our top 10 tips:

  1. Protect time for particular tasks – e.g. office tasks or time off-farm, and allow time for unplanned activities to crop up on a daily basis
  2. Have a checklist and prioritise (daily, weekly, monthly) – include deadlines – maybe even say NO to jobs!
  3. Have a jobs list positioned so whole farm team can see/use it (a whiteboard comes highly recommended!) Use specific communication for specific tasks – e.g. WhatsApp group for bulling cows, farm map labelled for contractors, etc.
  4. Get quick wins in early every day - maybe do some duller jobs first so you can reward yourself with your favourite jobs later!
  5. Switch off distractions – e.g. stop phone notifications beeping, close workshop door
  6. Fix/maintain equipment – e.g. gates that don’t swing, get rid of the baler twine!
  7. Batch jobs where possible – e.g. when handling stock do more than one job at a time, or do all your phone calls/email/ordering at a particular time of the day/month
  8. Embrace technology/Gadget solutions – e.g. calf feeding machines, bat latch gates, roller tail painters, squeeze gaps
  9. Have fixed places to keep equipment or information to avoid losing things – e.g. shadow boards in workshop, files for particular records
  10. Before starting a new task, take the time to organise and prepare – e.g. gather tools ready
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