top of page
  • Writer's pictureLe

How To Keep Client Deadlines—Stress-free!


We all want a well-planned deadline for our clients, but it can be so narrowing to meet our deadlines on time—especially when we're unaware that the source of the problem exists within.


Yes, the challenge may be within ourselves...and not the client!


After we've explored our own personal habits, we can assess our professional workflow a bit better.


But...if you prefer to skip these root causes, no problem! Here are some best practices to insure a realistic deadline for you and your client— without feeling stressed or overwhelmed.

Overview - What are Deadlines?



Otherwise, for those who are ready to (first) dive deeper into your personal development journey, we invite you to continue reading.



 


how to meet client deadlines

"Why can't I meet my deadline on time?" It could be subconscious responses—our personal habits blending in with our professional habits.

For example, when we were students pulling an all-nighter to complete our essays or those times when we had to leave our desks to order some cheap take-out to make our due dates.


Some of these personal habits are less positive. Ask yourself, "Which personal habits are less positive and how will this impact my client relationships?"

Let's reflect on our motivations and inspirations. How would you answer the following questions? Be as transparent with yourself as possible:

  1. Am I always a last-minute person?

  2. Do I really want to work for this client?

  3. Have I overbooked my personal/business schedule?

  4. Do I have at least one person to talk to about my struggles?

  5. Do I feel confident about completing this client's project?

  6. Do I fully understand what's expected of me?

Please note: If you've answered these questions and discovered a less-optimistic outlook, no worries. We welcome you to explore our Personal Development Specialists and/or book a session with our friendly/experienced coaches and career counselors to provide professional support and guidance along your personal/business journey.


As it happens, there are ways to meet our deadlines without completely stressing over them.


It comes down to time management and communication—and you have the power to hone these skills in both your personal and professional space. Since "knowledge is power", let's (first) refresh your knowledge and (secondly) unlock some tips on how to keep client deadlines—and stay motivated!



 


What is a Deadline?


Deadlines are dates and times by which a task should be completed, also referred to as "due dates". Assigned at the outset of your project, the deadline is the latest possible time when either your manager or client expects the work completed and returned to them.

Meeting a deadline = finishing and submitting your work by or before the time and date assigned by your team lead.

What's the Importance of a Deadline?

For the most part, deadlines set up expectations. They are made to provide clear expectations of a project's overall needs. As the deadline approaches, you probably feel more motivated to complete your client's project. It's easier to track down assigned tasks and underline the urgency when you set a due date. Even if you're a team lead for a project, you'll find a new responsibility to boost that motivation by:

  • Sending email reminders to other team members

  • Highlighting the deadline importance in group meetings

  • Offering incentives—or friendly team competitions


how to keep client deadlines

Lastly, deadlines ensure a smooth workflow. It all stems from having clear expectations. You and your team members will provide better results for the client when everyone is in unity, understanding which tasks are more urgent,


So, make it plain; make it crystal clear. Confirm everyone understands through reminders—and perhaps you should consider using (free) project management tools.


Before we can delve into such tools, let's cover 6 key points that will help you connect the importance of deadlines with your determination to develop better time management skills.


 

How to Keep Client Deadlines

 

Communication is Fundamental

Keep your manager and client updated with your progress, This will insure good connections for both parties.

What to do when the inevitable occurs?

Let them know the specific solutions you'll develop to fix it.


Be transparent. If you miss a deadline, let your client or manager know what happened and how you're working through it.


Develop a reputation as a good communicator. This prevents a nasty, negative review and shows you're trying to keep them on a date. And if you're still on a deadline, it shows how you deliver on time—despite your challenge.


Put yourself in the client's shoes. How would YOU want to be treated?


Create Milestones & Checklist

Another great way to approach your deadlines is to divide big projects into separate milestones.

When setting up small milestones, provide a checklist of how much you accomplish or the time you have to complete the deadline and when you are able to meet its initial end.

Outsets Date Completion for Each Step


When larger tasks are broken down, you can create an outset date completion for each smaller task you've identified. This will attract a positive outcome for the timeline you're working with—and reveal if you're on schedule...or falling behind. Specifically, as you start your outsets date completion, you’ll notice that it feels very motivating to see your progress as you check things off your project deadline list. It helps you recognize the tasks you haven’t reached yet.

Time Blocking

What exactly is time blocking? Well, time blocking is when you block off a spot on your calendar and assign a set number of hours to a single task. It helps to rule out distractions outside of the project by blocking off your time (and your mind) from other projects.

Project Buffer

Consider adding a project buffer; it's extra time added to your task without affecting the overall schedule, and gives you some flexibility when on a time crunch.


Things happen. They happen in your personal life, with and without notice. Be encouraged to be transparent about your schedule and always give a little wiggle-room for unforeseen events. If you know that a project will take 10 business days to complete, consider a schedule that allows 14 business days (a full 2 weeks). Your client will understand—if you leverage your own availabilities in the beginning.



Overcommitment

We all fall into overcommitment—adding cumbersome loads on ourselves without realizing. It causes us to be overwhelmed and stressed which translates into our workflow being insufficient. It seems we're juggling a thousand balls mindlessly. Unfortunately, this will bring an end to client trust on our part because it puts a bad reflection on our work ethic and the ability to produce a completed project.


Clients can see it—and feel it!


Think about how you feel when you encounter negative customer service from a brand or service? You feel rushed. You feel unwelcome. You lack confidence in that store or business.




So...How Do I Rule-out My Commitments? 1. Create boundaries for yourself. 2. Avoid last-minute commitments. 3. Say "No" and "Yes"—and mean it. 4. Get sufficient rest. 5. Don’t be afraid to turn down work if you know that you’ve already got your hands full.

6. Whatever client project goes against your morals, let it go. It may not be for you. Period. It's important to understand what deadlines are and why they matter so much.


It's equally important to understand your value—and how your happiness is impacted overall.


Yes, you may need the money...we totally understand! But, without a positive reputation and peace within yourself, you will not reach long-term success. It will not last long.


Make the best decision for your own business—and wellness.


Need one-on-one help? We're here for you! Learn more -or- Book a session >

 


Once you understand, you begin to assimilate the best practices for meeting deadlines and eliminating your stresses throughout your work day. You begin to build trust from your clients. You begin a more positive and progressive work journey! After you have this baseline, revisit this article to go through and follow the practices to meet deadlines.

Book a session with us for personal development

If you found this article helpful, share it with your colleague who could benefit from it! Next, I encourage you to explore free and affordable project management tools that'll help you remain organized and on task! Learn more>


You've got this! You have the power and determination to grow more positive work habits and build better client relationships—so stay encouraged and take it one step at a time. The best is yet to come!




Comments


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page