There’s no denying that checklists are considered a universal tool in life. That’s true in business, just as it is on our personal life. Most successful leaders use checklists of some sort to keep track of things instead of relying solely on memory. And as a bonus, checklists give us a sense of achievement every time we scratch off one of the entries in the list!
Checklists don’t require much effort and time—but they do require a bit. Unless you’re using already designed checklist forms (as you'll find in The Checker Software or The Checker Books), checklists take time to be drawn up. And even when we have them at the ready, we’re sometimes tempted to not use checklists, only to turn back later and make costly corrections that require much more effort than a checklist.
Relying solely on your memory is not usually a wise choice. To illustrate, consider the usefulness of checklists in our personal lives.
We've all been in a situation where we go to the store determined to buy a bunch of things we need, only to come back home and realize we forgot something. We then either have to make do without or go back to the store (costing gas and your time).
Grocery lists prevent this all-too-common mistake. What's more, shopping lists can keep us from buying all sorts of stuff we don't need in the first place.
Going on Holiday
If we only take a bit of time and put together a checklist of all the things that we need to take with us, we won't find ourselves in a foreign country without the phone charger, our comfy walking shoes, or heart medications. Likewise, it will prevent us from missing our flight when we realize we don't have our passports with us at the airport!
A list of all outstanding bills and their due dates is handy. Such a checklist will make sure that you don't forget to pay something, resulting in late fees and possible negative impacts on your credit score.
When it comes to cleaning, many of us have a system. That system can be daily or weekly, depending on the available time we have and how tidy we want our home to be. A checklist with everything that needs to be done will surely expedite the process.
While these examples are not exhaustive, they do paint a clear picture as to how important and useful checklists are or could be in our daily lives.
Business checklists are just the same— by not relying solely on memory, companies can use these lists to optimize time, do everything they set out to do, and not have to come back and redo any of them.
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