One of the most difficult tasks that independent consultants must handle is managing their time and projects. Besides being disciplined because you’re essentially working from home and can create your own schedule, you’re also at the mercy of your customers. This can be a problem because your clients don’t care how much work you have as long as you get their project done when they need it. And, because you don’t want to run into a situation where your work dries up, you keep taking on more and more projects.
Because you’re juggling multiple clients, projects, and deadlines, how can you manage everything and still be productive?
For starters, you may have to decide whether or not you want to live that lifestyle. If you don’t mind working that much and like bringing in the money, you can take on as many clients as you like. If you do run into any roadblocks that prevents you from completing a project, be honest with the client and explain the situation.
To help make you more productive and manage your time more efficiently, you can also try using some of these powerful project management tools:
- Basecamp – This is one of the most popular project management and collaboration tools available where you can assign tasks, exchange ideas, and manage deadlines.
- Trello – An easy-to-use project management tool that allows you to assign due dates, create checklists, upload files, and create individual boards for either clients or team members.
- Evernote – This popular note-taking app can used to keep your career, and personal life, in order by creating tasks, taking notes, and capturing https://due.com/wp-content/themes/due/images/web pages. You can even turn your notes into slides with Evernote’s Present feature.
- Solo – This free app was created with freelancers in mind. You can use it to create contacts with project info, manage tasks, track your progress, and upload files.
- LiquidPlanner – This project management can assist consultants because it focuses on scheduling. In fact, it will automatically create schedules based on project priorities. It also comes with time and task tracking.
- Podio – You can use Podio to stay organized by managing and discussing specific tasks on a single page. It also has a simple drag-and-drop interface and can be customized to suit your needs.
- Wrike – Real-time project management tool that allows you to break goals into tasks, instantly communicate with team members, and transform emails into tasks. Wrike integrates with Google Drive, Word, and Excel.
- Project Bubble – This tool provides Gantt charts, client progress reports, visual milestones, the ability to automate recurring tasks, daily outlooks, and the power to assign tasks.
- Projecturf – You can use this tool to collaborate with team members or clients in real-time through in-line commenting, Gantt charts, and email notifications. It also integrates with Google Drive and Dropbox.
- Due.com – There’s a handy time tracking tool if you need to track the time you spent on a project, as well as reports that describe tasks and calander summary of upcoming tasks. Due.com also integrates with Basecamp.
If you ever do get overwhelmed, you may want to consider outsourcing some work. You can use some of those same freelancing sites, like Upwork, to find an assistant or another consultant looking for work to help lessen the burden.