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Tracking your work activities, deadlines, meetings and events can be a daunting task, but it's an important one if you want to ensure you do your job properly. A planner is an essential tool in the process. Your planner can be a spiral notebook or a digital program. You can even use the two in combination, but if you do you must update both on a regular basis. The key to effective planning is coming up with a system that works for you, such as one that uses colors to help you stay organized.
Planning in Color
Using colors in a planner allows you to tell at a glance what the activity is. One approach is to select colors that represent degrees of urgency – for example, red for the most critical tasks and other colors for decreasing degrees of urgency. Coding different activities with different colors is an alternative approach, such as red for meetings, green for routine tasks and yellow for special events. You can also use different colored pens or highlighters to distinguish between different tasks. Color coding different projects gives you easy access to them so you can check progress quickly and efficiently. You can extend your coding by using colored folders, paper and Post-It notes to keep track of different tasks at work. The key to planning with colors is consistency. Once the technique becomes second nature to you, you will find you are more efficient and better organized.
Thomas Metcalf has worked as an economist, stockbroker and technology salesman. A writer since 1997, he has written a monthly column for "Life Association News," authored several books and contributed to national publications such as the History Channel's "HISTORY Magazine." Metcalf holds a master's degree in economics from Tufts University.