The Key to Making Today a Successful Business Day

Productivity tips

The wheels of business keep turning, faster and faster, and the last thing you want to do is hit the brakes. But, it might be the most important step you can take today.

Here is what I mean: The key to a successful business day is slowing down for 15 minutes every day, and having a daily PPR Session.

Schedule your most valuable appointment

What is PPR? In planning-speak, it stands for Plan, Prioritize, and Review. In business-speak, it’s a valuable appointment you must make each day with your business where you slow down, take a deep breath, and prepare the important aspects of your business.

Schedule 15 minutes each day. If you make an effort to PPR every day you will find yourself needing less time to organize your business.

Do it before the phones start ringing, the email starts flying in, and before people start knocking at your door.

First thing in the morning is usually the best PPR time, but some like to PPR at day’s end when events are still fresh in their mind.

Feel the pulse of your business

This is a beneficial step for any business, and is especially vital to those having small office or home office environments where you unlock the doors, wear many hats, and brew the coffee, among other things.

This is your time to become one with the heartbeat of your business. Follow these steps:

• First, Review yesterday’s notes and spot new task and appointment requests. This is particularly important because an important follow-up action may have resulted from a client conversation or business meeting that must be addressed with urgency.

• Also, Review the previous day’s Action List in your day planner for any tasks not completed. Evaluate whether these are still priorities or whether they should be put back on your Master Task list — or Grass-Catcher list — for another day.

Plan your daily task list, according to important needs and other urgent commitments that you deem necessary to your business. Be sure to fill your daily Action List with descriptive action words like “complete,” “outline,” “research,” and “contact.” Keep your list realistic and doable.

Prioritize your daily Action List by determining which tasks are A tasks (must be done today), B tasks (need to get done, but won’t be penalized if not), and C tasks (want to get done, but can wait another day). Then, number your various tasks in the order you want to complete them.

Plan your schedule, first by referencing your monthly “master” calendar, and then by creating any necessary meetings based on yesterday’s activities. Next, create any on-task project appointments you would like to block out time for.

• Determine the Priorities of your schedule. Keep yourself from being overbooked by choosing appointments to which you will commit, and others which you must cancel. To keep the customers first today, you may have to bypass a meeting or two.

Review what your business accomplished yesterday, and make a mental note of what you can do to build on this success today. Always build off the momentum of success, meaning, if you were successful with a particular sales presentation yesterday, by all means use it again today.

Is 15 minutes of your time worth a fortune in business productivity? The PPR session is a small but effective step you can take today to ensure success.

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[photo by Jerry Frausto]
Jeff Doubek Day-Timer Spokesperson Jeff Doubek can be reached at

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