Making Time for Time Management
October 24, 2020
Time is one of your most important resources and there are ways of stretching it. Time management will teach you how.
Break it up:
Break up your large tasks into small and manageable ones. Start by estimating the effort needed to accomplish a particular job. Write out a sequence of activities that are needed in order to complete it, along with an estimate of how long each will take. Now take them on one at a time, and periodically monitor how much time you’re actually taking, compared to the plan. This is a very important part of time management, and with practice you’ll be able to get it right!
Prioritize your work:
List out all the tasks you must carry out to achieve your goal and put them in order of importance. This enables you to tackle the most important and beneficial jobs first. If there are too many high priority jobs, you’ll either have to rearrange your schedule or delegate some of the work. This helps you focus on doing things that are really critical.
The 80:20 rule says that 80% of unfocused effort generates only 20% of results and the remaining 80% of results are achieved with only 20% of the effort!
Plan the unplanned:
Things rarely turn out the way we intend them to. Time management teaches you to keep aside some time for those inevitable crises. Often not budgeting for those extra hours might itself create a crisis!
Keep an activity log:
We already talked about the need to monitor progress. You can do this by maintaining an activity log, which helps you track the way you use your time – how much time are you actually spending in productive work and how much are you wasting? Are there some tasks that could be done in a more efficient manner? The goal of time management is to answer such questions. Analyze the log at the end of each project to identify possible areas of improvement.
Make reminder lists:
Unless you have the memory of an elephant, it’s not likely that you’ll remember everything that you need to do. Make a to-do list for the day or week. This will ensure that you don’t forget to do something, or worse, miss that all-important customer appointment!
Do the unpleasant bit first:
Procrastination is our biggest obstacle to effective time management. We all have our pain points, and it’s only natural to put-off those jobs for as long as possible… or when they’ll probably blow up in our faces. Discipline yourself to do at least one “unpleasant” task each day, and watch the results.
Ease your work plan:
Hey, good time management isn’t only about work. Make sure you’ve set some time aside for your personal life as well. It’s amazing how you can improve your effectiveness at work by striking the right balance.