How to Manage Your Time Best
What are two singularly important things in business? Right, money and time. However, it is money that most people care and tend to give more attention to, isn’t it? More often than not we think of time management in very simple terms, like: “What tasks am I to do today?”, or “What is my next task?” What’s worse, we pay time tracking far to little attention, despite its pivotal role in effective time management.
Personal time management is as important as a good business strategy for a corporation. Only effective managing time can we set out to achieve goals we are charged with in today’s rush of things.
Budgeting your time spending, in other words giving it a sensible schedule, is as vital a skill as budgeting an organization. Not too much, not too little.
Set Priorities in How You Manage Time
Effective time management step number one is to develop a time strategy, rather than a schedule at once. A short list of priorities is what the strategy should be based on.
First, identify the primary way you can increase profits by better use of your time; then the way number two; then the way number three; etc. This short list of time priorities is going to serve as the basis for time planning you will do ahead of every week onward.
“Ordinary people think merely how they will spend their time, a man of intellect tries to use it.”
These time management milestones may coincide with key items of your company strategy or not. For example, if top-notch technical support is what your company strategy is based on, then focusing your time spending on managing customer support may not be the best use of your time if it is what your skillful well-trained customer support agents take care of all right all the same.
Focus All the Way!
Focus is a crucial element in time management, the rule being the fewer priority things you are focusing on at a time, the better and more results you will get.
After you have had your time management priorities for the year ahead properly lined up, proceed to decide how they should be allocated by week or month. It is not realistic to expect that you will have time to work on priorities only, so it is worthwhile to work out a minimum number of priority targets you wish to hit in a week. As a result, with, say, ten strategic goals in a year, you may find it realistic to focus on one or two of them in any given week, not more.
More specifically, in the week 25 your plan will have a number one priority target for you to work on, say, improving the ways you accountancy is organized, and a less important priority task, e.g. finding replacement for an accountant, but no slot for any other tasks even though they are on the priority short list.
Exercise Smart Goal Setting
Your every week should see you make a detailed time management plan for the next week to be adjusted as often as needed. Except for emergencies, your task is to see to it that other things to do don’t steal time from the management priorities.
As a rule of thumb, your time management priorities will include such steps as planning, hatching, and developing ideas. To a much larger degree than other things to do, such activities call for hulks of nonstop action time, i.e. when nobody or nothing interrupts you.
When you are interrupted in your process of work, chances of effective time management drop dramatically. An effective way to say no to interruption is to make it clear to everybody that when your Skype says you’re busy, or you have your door locked on the inside you are not to be disturbed. Another way is use meetings, such as morning staff meetings, where unimportant things are discussed and assigned to persons to be responsible for doing them. This way you delegate things to other people, saving time for more important things.
Avoid Time Leaks!
Below is a list of “time leaks” you may find useful to be aware of:
- Not using a time tracking software. This is a drawback you can appreciate only after you start using one. State-of-the-art time trackers are so efficient these days, that not using one is really nothing but a time leak.
- Using verbal exchange as opposed to IM like Skype. Research shows you lose less time this way. Besides, usual intercourse is more likely to develop into a casual conversation about weather and things.
- Avoiding to ‘eat the frog’, i.e. your most difficult task of all. It pays more if you procrastinate on routine, not huge things.
- Not starting the most urgent work first thing in the morning.
- Not taking the time to work out a time table for the next day.
- Overpacked schedule—giving a day so tight a time table that it is impossible to keep and all the effort turns out to be wasted.
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Urgent matters that life is rife with really make very little difference in the final analysis. Say, you’re five minutes late for a corporate meeting. You are scolded like hell for just a five minutes, while a corporate meeting can prove a real waste of corporate time (including the chairperson’s), such as taking-so-long minutes of announcements that would be better off emailed you in advance. read on…
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Time Management Tips
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