How to deal with deadlines and organise work

In spite of careful planning and scheduling we face the problem of piling workload and are constantly working to finish assignments on time. This constant pressure to meet deadlines has become an integral part of the work culture in today.

Dealing with project deadlines can be challenging for even the most organised and hard-working people. It can be difficult to know exactly how to manage your time, energy and commitments in order to finish things on time and produce the best quality of work. However, deadlines don’t have to be daunting. A little planning and structure can help anyone deal with project deadlines so that they’re met with grace and ease.

Below are the Q-A sessions in Rediff chat answered by Amit Bansal, the founder and CEO of PurpleLeap.


Mitul asked, I am going through tough time management on work as well as personal life. I normally looks busy all the time but end of the day i am not satisfy myself on work done by myself.I dont know how to deal with this issue.
Amit Bansal answers, Do a root cause analysis. Sometimes we feel that way because we have too many things on our plate. Spend some time to sit with yourself and introspect. Maybe you just need a break to sort out things and structure a process to handle your responsibilities.

Hintred asked, How do we set SMART goals? A lot of times, we miss out on peroforming our tasks because the goals are unrealistic
Amit Bansal answers, Therefore, it is important we check if the goal we have set for ourselves is realistic with respect to the given situation, resources and time.

nishant asked, inspite of all planning for the deadlines n organising the deadlines r not easy to meet – its easy to say then in action< whts the remedy
Amit Bansal answers, And therefore it’s called a deadline. :). It’s always a struggle and will remain one, however it’s the sense of achievement one gets once a tough deadline is achieved.

Krish asked, I am from a finance background.Due to intial time estimates of any work being a best guess ‘estimate’ ,which is often not based on structured thought or work methodology plus no one can accurately predict the behaviour of outside factors including human beings behaviour,the work usually ends up taking more time and the backlog keeps creeping up.
Amit Bansal answers, It’s anticipating these interruptions as well while creating a project timeline. Your best guess should also be in some way coming from a past experience.

Mitul asked, Hi Amit, My most of the time going in follow-up and micro manage things in spite of delegate to teams. I see escation coming to me as i am manager and responsible for team performance. can you guide how to handle it?
Amit Bansal answers, Mitul, you can create escalation levels so that only the very high red flag escalations come to you. Would you like to share your specific problem here?

Ashu asked, How to deal with sitting late in office ? Private companies do not pay overtime.I worked in Maersk India.It never paid me overtime.
Amit Bansal answers, Then what’s the reason for staying late in office?

Ramya asked, Amit,Thank you.Iam not manager friendly in the sense I will do my work and never pose much.This resuls to less visibility and my work is getting recognition inspite of knowing me as valuable resource.How to come out of this?
Amit Bansal answers, In organizations if you are not able to highlight your work you cannot blame anyone for not noticing you. It’s not about one or two people. Therefore it’s important you talk about your work. Keep people in email loop and talk about your ideas in meetings. It’s a mindset, practice on working on changing it. And it’s not negative to talk about your work.. but subtly without bragging.

saleem07 asked, when I have 10 works to do, I end up doing the 11th one which is not important and not urgent. How to organize my work.
Amit Bansal answers, You need to be more disciplined.

sunil asked, Dear Sir, How to deal with situations when our boss give work daily on 7 pm and expecting to do it right now.
Amit Bansal answers, You must talk to your boss about it. Be assertive to say that you can complete it only the next day. Maybe a one on one conversation about it to your boss is the best way to handle it.

aravindkumartbang asked, Amit, Inspite of doing good enough work there lacks promotion this has happened in my last company & is repeated here.. is there a way to get noticed and be pushed for next position?
Amit Bansal answers, A lot of time you need to create a need to be promoted. Doing good enough work is very good, now focus on a business need and how you alone can make a difference to bring about a change in the system. Talk about it to your management. The key is having a brilliant idea and convincing the stakeholders that your can make it happen.

red asked, Amit , thank u but need more elobrate and practical ans
Amit Bansal answers, Can you tell me what profile you work in and if there are any challenges you are facing?

Ramya asked, Now we are in the time of recession in IT.We can’t say no to any work to prove our worth.How to manage these type of situation?
Amit Bansal answers, You must not say no, however being assertive and convincing people on how much time you will take to complete a task without compromising on quality is important.

chetna asked, My boss does not respond on time. Approvals are late hence it impacts my performance. what to do?
Amit Bansal answers, You need to find an alternative way to follow up with him. Perseverance works most of the time 🙂

GAGAN asked, I guess the expectations of client and todays managers are beyond realistic and everything cannot be done on a deadline specified by them as there are exogenous factors responsible for delays… what would be your take on this
Amit Bansal answers, Absolutely. However, to handle it professionally, rather than talking about what’s your opinion it’s better to highlight experiences and learning in past projects.

red asked, Amit bhai, how to shine in the new job??
Amit Bansal answers, I appreciate you asking me the same question in every chat session. Be good with your assigned job and be proactive and take up all opportunities you can handle. That’s the way to shine in a job. Hope I am able to answer your query. 🙂

Bhavin asked, How do you deal with a manager who thinks that you can deliver a baby in 1 month with 9 women. I stressed him that we will try out best to complete it but the manager says put in more resources and complete the work.the work is dependency based and hence cannot be done by more people.I tried to explain him but to no do you deal with them?
Amit Bansal answers, I suggest look at the past performance data for a similar kind of project. Stating your reasons with solid backing of data is important. Most often either we don’t keep a record of it or we think it’s an unnecessary step. However, when you talk about your past performance and learning people agree because no one wants half baked food. You need to convince stakeholders that quality work can be done only if a certain time is invested but all this should be backed by data.

Bhavin asked, A client who is very demanding and he insists on setting up a deadline and is not bothered what you do to get it.He is a contract which is FP and you know maybe by more resources you might just be able to do it but will cost the project more. How do you deal with this situation
Amit Bansal answers, While establishing deadlines most often we work on approximations. And therefore it becomes difficult to convince a client about why we are assigning a particular timeline. A gantt chart is a very effective tool. You may want to explain your point of view to your client through this tool along with stating reason for each timeline very objectively backed by data.


Rediff Chat Date: Jan  20, 2012





One comment on “How to deal with deadlines and organise work

  1. I work in a busy kitchen being a steward. My work starts at 2pm and I’m to finnish at 7:30 before or after, my work involves washing dishes, pots and pans, wiping down benches, taking bevrage orders, folding up chairs/tables, vacum and mop both front of house and kitchen area, taking rubbish and small bits and pieces and involves. I usually sign out at 8 but am stuck before due to those bits and pieces, so I stay behind and finnish them off which takes another 15-20 minutes which I’m not paid for. Is that the right way to approach my problem? I’m a very hard worker, but its a challenge to do it all in 6 or so hours. Is there a better way to solve my problems? I don’t want an angry manager/grumpy head chef against me nor do I want my contract to end.

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