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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Time Management

Time Management Definition
�Time management� is the process of organizing and planning how to divide your time between specific activities. Good time management enables you to work smarter � not harder � so that you get more done in less time, even when time is tight and pressures are high. Failing to manage your time damages your effectiveness and causes stress.
It seems that there is never enough time in the day. But, since we all get the same 24 hours, why is it that some people achieve so much more with their time than others? The answer lies in good time management.
The highest achievers manage their time exceptionally well. By using the time-management techniques in this section, you can improve your ability to function more effectively � even when time is tight and pressures are high.
Good time management requires an important shift in focus from activities to results: being busy isn�t the same as being effective. (Ironically, the opposite is often closer to the truth.)
Spending your day in a frenzy of activity often achieves less, because you�re dividing your attention between so many different tasks. Good time management lets you work smarter � not harder � so you get more done in less time.

What Is Time Management?

�Time management� refers to the way that you organize and plan how long you spend on specific activities.
It may seem counter-intuitive to dedicate precious time to learning about time management, instead of using it to get on with your work, but the benefits are enormous:
         Greater productivity and efficiency.
         A better professional reputation.
         Less stress.
         Increased opportunities for advancement.
         Greater opportunities to achieve important life and career goals.
Failing to manage your time effectively can have some very undesirable consequences:
         Missed deadlines.
         Inefficient work flow.
         Poor work quality.
         A poor professional reputation and a stalled career.
         Higher stress levels.
Spending a little time learning about time-management techniques will have huge benefits now � and throughout your career.

Key Points

Time management is the process of organizing and planning how much time you spend on specific activities. Invest some time in our comprehensive collection of time management articles to learn about managing your own time more efficiently, and save yourself time in the future.

How Good Is Your Time Management?


How often do you find yourself running out of time? Weekly, daily, hourly? For many people, it seems that there's just never enough time in the day to get everything done. When you know how to manage your time you gain control of what you achieve.
Take this self-test quiz to identify the aspects of time management that you need most help with. The results will point you to the specific tools that will help you to work more efficiently.

Goal Setting

To start managing time effectively, you need to set goals. When you know where you're going, you can then figure out what exactly needs to be done, in what order. Without proper goal setting, you'll fritter your time away on a confusion of conflicting priorities.
People tend to neglect goal setting because it requires time and effort. What they fail to consider is that a little time and effort put in now saves an enormous amount of time, effort and frustration in the future. Mind Tools has two great articles on goal setting that are must-reads for everyone. If you are serious about time management, we suggest you start with Personal Goal Setting  and The Golden Rules of Goal Setting . We also recommend Treasure Mapping .
Prioritization
Prioritizing what needs to be done is especially important. Without it, you may work very hard, but you won't be achieving the results you desire because what you are working on is not of strategic importance.
Most people have a "to-do" list of some sort. The problem with many of these lists is they are just a collection of things that need to get done. There is no rhyme or reason to the list and, because of this, the work they do is just as unstructured. So how do you work on To Do List tasks � top down, bottom up, easiest to hardest?
To work efficiently you need to work on the most important, highest value tasks. This way you won't get caught scrambling to get something critical done as the deadline approaches. For information on how to start prioritizing your tasks.

Managing Interruptions

Having a plan and knowing how to prioritize it is one thing. The next issue is knowing what to do to minimize the interruptions you face during your day. It is widely recognized that managers get very little uninterrupted time to work on their priority tasks. There are phone calls, information requests, questions from employees, and a whole host of events that crop up unexpectedly. Some do need to be dealt with immediately, but others need to be managed. Our article on Managing Interruptions  discusses how you can minimize your interrupted time.
However, some jobs need you to be available for people when they need help � interruption is a natural and necessary part of life. Here, do what you sensibly can to minimize it, but make sure you don't scare people away from interrupting you when they should.
Procrastination
"I'll get to it later" has led to the downfall of many a good employee. After too many "laters" the work piles up so high that any task seems insurmountable. Procrastination is as tempting as it is deadly. The best way to beat it is to recognize that you do indeed procrastinate. Then you need to figure out why. Perhaps you are afraid of failing? (And some people are actually afraid of success!)
Once you know why you procrastinate then you can plan to get out of the habit. Reward yourself for getting jobs done, and remind yourself regularly of the horrible consequences of not doing those boring tasks! For more help on recognizing and overcoming procrastination see our guide to Beating Procrastination .
Scheduling
Much of time management comes down to effective scheduling of your time. When you know what your goals and priorities are, you then need to know how to go about creating a schedule that keeps you on track, and protects you from stress.
This means understanding the factors that affect the time you have available for work. You not only have to schedule priority tasks, you have to leave room for interruptions, and contingency time for those unexpected events that otherwise wreak chaos with your schedule. By creating a robust schedule that reflects your priorities and well as supports your personal goals, you have a winning combination: One that will allow you to control your time and keep your life in balance. To learn specific scheduling skills, see our articles on Pickle Jar Theory  and Scheduling Skills .
Key Points
Time management is an essential skill that helps you keep your work under control, at the same time that it helps you keep stress to a minimum.
We would all love to have an extra couple of hours in every day. Seeing as that is impossible, we need to work smarter on things that have the highest priority, and then creating a schedule that reflects our work and personal priorities.

With this in place, we can work in a focused and effective way, and really start achieving those goals, dreams and ambitions we care so much about.


Source: Anonymous

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