How you get things done! – Seven (and a half) tips

4 mins

“How are your good intentions going?” This question can be pretty startling if you’re not expecting it. Good intentions often stem from a desire to do things differently or to achieve a particular result. It’s not just about perseverance but also focus. In this article, we will discuss tips on how to get things done.

Many of the employees at Animana have previously worked in a practice, so we are writing based on our practical experience and mixing it with elements of working at a software company. These are our seven (and a half) tips on how to get things done.

1. An underestimated superpower – ‘finishing something’

Stop starting and start finishing – make sure to complete a task before moving on to the next one. If you leave too many tasks open simultaneously, you can get stuck in a bottleneck where nothing gets done. Therefore, focusing on completing one task at a time is best. It will make you a more reliable and pleasant colleague and ensure smooth cooperation.

2. Focus on flow

The purpose of initiating or finishing tasks is to establish a seamless work process, commonly called a flow. This ensures that activities stay active and steps are distinct from one another. Additionally, it minimises the waiting time between tasks and allows for faster value realisation.

3. Multitasking is a Myth

It’s a common assumption that we can multitask and switch between different tasks, activities or assignments without negatively impacting productivity. However, research has shown that multitasking reduces the speed at which information is processed and increases the number of errors. In addition, task switching takes a lot of energy, which can lead to fatigue. To work more efficiently and improve the quality of your output, it’s best to focus on one task at a time.

4. Work in small steps

It is recommended to work iteratively. This means breaking down large tasks into smaller, more manageable pieces to increase the chances of success. This approach can also help manage complexity and reduce dependence on other tasks or colleagues. Every small piece of work completed contributes to the bigger picture and can be quickly assessed for its value. For example, in the post-operative process, patients must be cared for, administration must be done, and the operating theatre and treatment rooms must be cleaned. Many things happen simultaneously, and errors will likely occur during these moments. However, working in small, manageable pieces is the core of iterative work, which involves regularly delivering small, valuable parts.

5. Prioritising as a permanent habit

Setting priorities becomes more challenging when we are pressed for time. Of course, in emergency situations, we need to take a different approach. We may need to do certain things first, such as turning on the X-ray machine or preparing the operating room. It is also important to ask the pet owner essential questions to understand the situation better. With this information, we can reschedule appointments as necessary. Developing a habit of setting priorities every day and communicating them clearly helps us work more efficiently. We should start each task with a clear overview of what needs to be handled first. This requires self-discipline and the ability to manage our emotions, which is essential for effective agile working.

6. Stop estimating your work in hours alone

Instead of only considering the time required for a task, it is more effective to consider previous experiences dealing with similar tasks and the factors that affect the work. This relative estimation approach can help in planning projects and tasks more realistically, increasing the chances of meeting deadlines and accomplishing goals. While this may not apply to daily routine tasks, it is highly beneficial for an annual stock count or when a new employee performs cash count for the first time.

7. Don’t hide

In a team that is well-coordinated and in sync with each other, everyone feels secure and is willing to be open and honest with one another. Although errors may occur occasionally, they can be discussed effectively. Transparency is a crucial principle in the agile working approach. Sharing updates on work progress (the flow) and any obstacles encountered encourages trust and collaboration. At Animana, we utilise tools such as Kanban boards to keep everyone informed about the status of various tasks and increase the visibility of the work. This also promotes feedback, which is essential for continuous improvement.

7.5 Also, a bit of luck

Our final advice may not seem like advice at all, but it is still vital. Sometimes, to achieve your goals, you need to have luck. The pieces of the puzzle must fall into place perfectly, and the timing must be right. Of course, this is only sometimes the case, as seen in many examples throughout this article. However, it can be helpful to have a stroke of luck when it comes to larger projects or specific objectives. For instance, if you’re making significant changes, you need everything to go smoothly. Or, if you’re focusing on a particular subject, you might need to find the right account manager to assist you. Of course, you can increase your chances of success by setting clear goals and working hard to achieve them. A positive attitude and a determination to succeed can go a long way.


You may be unfamiliar with some of the terminology used in this article, so here’s a quick guide.

  • Agile Working: A way of working on projects in short iterations and regularly evaluating progress. This approach enables teams to quickly adapt to changes.
  • Lean Working: A way to make work more efficient by wasting less time and doing more of what really matters to the customer.
  • Iterative Working: Dividing a large project into smaller pieces that you complete one by one. After each piece you look at what can be improved for the next piece.
  • Kanban boards: A board that shows you the progress of various tasks. You can move task cards from “start” to “in progress” and then to “done” to indicate how the work is progressing.
  • Relative Estimation: A method of estimating the size or difficulty of a task by comparing it to other tasks that you already know about, instead of guessing how many hours it will take.

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