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"Tell the chef, the beer is on me."
Zero points: Cauliflower popcorn (Break a head of cauliflower into popcornlike, bite-size florets, then spread them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spray the cauliflower lightly with butter-flavor cooking spray, then sprinkle lightly with turmeric, freshly ground pepper, and sea salt. Bake 20 to 30 minutes at 425 degrees F or until the cauliflower is slightly browned.) (1 cup = 29 cal., 5 g carb., 0 g fat, 2 g pro.)
Are you managing to keep track of your online career? Do you have a plan or are you just hoping you remember everything?
Personally, I run a lot of different #projects online, freelance for a number of different places and use a tonne of different metrics to gauge my success. I have a killer #to-do list in Todoist, but that wasn’t actually enough for me. I needed to be able to see at a glance whether I was on top of things or not.
For me, that meant being sure I’d done all the parts of my freelance editing work, written and planned enough articles for my freelance writing clients and my own blogs, being certain I’d scheduled social media updates for my Vocal Content clients, and making sure I’d filled out my official income recording spreadsheet for tax purposes. (In fact, this whole thing came about by my original client tracking system for Vocal Content.)
So, I devised a master tracker spreadsheet in Google Docs to keep track of all of these different projects. Since I was already tracking most of the above information in individual spreadsheets, I just developed a system of noting when they had been checked (and next needed to be checked), then used that same system in each document. Now in my master tracker I can reference each individual spreadsheet to get an overview of what needs doing.
I decided to use this spreadsheet to also track some other spreadsheets where I tally my follower counts on social media, and my activity in social media, plus my activity in the most important groups I’m involved in. It also tracks spreadsheets that note any interviews I do, all my #planning for upcoming Twitter chats and how my overall marketing and conversions are going.
The stroke of genius was in making sure I had one cell in each document that used the CONCATENATE() function to give an overview of the most important things. In my blog schedule, this references my last post (brought in using IMPORTFEED()), in my official income report it calculates my average hourly rate for the work I’m doing, and in my budget it tells me my monthly income and expenditure.
The advantage of this one-cell overview is that now the master tracking spreadsheet has not just the dates I need to do more work on these spreadsheets, but an overview of the most important information I can glean from each of the individual spreadsheets.
When it comes to the individual spreadsheets, sometimes I can even automate the updating of the relevant cells by using MAX() functions in the relevant columns. So, instead of worrying about updating YET ANOTHER THING, all I do is go about my work and recording as per usual and it automatically updates everything for me.
The master tracker highlights dates that are more than a week old in orange, and dates more than a month old in red. Mostly, I want them all to stay white. That means I’m doing fine!
Basically, when I look at this list there’s nothing for me to DO in this spreadsheet except note at the top that I’ve checked it. Every piece of data is imported and it’s just a quick way to see what I’m on top of and what’s not been done recently. All I do is glance through it and look for red and orange cells. As I’ve linked the relevant spreadsheets to the titles on the left, if there’s a red cell I just click the link and get to work in the relevant spreadsheet.
And then, because occasionally I feel like I’m supposed to be doing home-related things instead of my work, I have thrown a few “Life” spreadsheets into the top. This includes my family budget, life goal tracking and other useful spreadsheets. You can ignore this section if you like, but I find that knowing I’m on top of these everyday household things means I can actually concentrate on my work.
Someone at the VCBuzz Twitter Chat I was a guest for the other day asked me to share this tracking spreadsheet, which is the whole reason I wrote this post and made a slightly more generic template.
— Jimmy R – Writer (@dbjim21) November 17, 2015
So, if you also want to take a look at a modified version of my master work planner tracker, you’re quite welcome to use the Google Template I made.
How do you stay on top of things? Tell us!
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