There are 168 hours in each week, which sounds like a lot, but in reality they whizz by so quickly! How do we find time for what matters most? While many of us would admit that from time to time we struggle to find that work life balance, managing priorities at work can be a whole new challenge. Looking from a management point of view, time management and prioritising workload may be aided by a range of skills, tools, and techniques. These skills are like a pair of shoes — you may have to try several before you find the one that is the right fit for you.
We have gathered some tips which may help you support your staff take a smarter approach to managing their time.
At the end of each day, a brief assessment of daily activities can be extremely helpful. Questions to consider could be:
- How did you spend your time?
- Which parts of your day were most and least productive?
- Are there activities or people in your day that don’t seem to add anything?
Focus on Planning
It sounds obvious but if one is truly going to act on their priorities, it is important to dedicate time to them. There are many different methods that can be adopted and even in our small team at Real People we all plan our activities differently. Also, you may like the amusing TED Talk of Time management expert Laura Vanderkam who studies how busy people spend their lives. Laura offers a few practical strategies to help find more time for what matters to us, so we can "build the lives we want in the time we've got."
Use The Eisenhower Box to be more productive
No matter who you are in this day and age, is seems as our To-Do lists are never ending. Therefore, it can be useful to approach lists in a different way. For example, when faced with a decision, stop and ask yourself: “Am I doing this because it’s important or am I doing it because it’s merely urgent?” It’s a simple decision-making tool that you can use right now borrowed by Dwight Eisenhower, the 34th President of the US. Check this link for more detailed information.
Applying the one-touch principle to email and paper
When you touch a piece of paper or an email, make a decision on what you are going to do and when you are going to do it. Double handling actually triples the time taken to complete the task. View all the emails in your inbox that you marked as unread as a decision you failed to make. Instead, file information, transfer To-Do lists, delegate to someone else if necessary, and delete the rubbish.
Even "Super You" needs help and support. Teach your employees to say “NO” at workplace. When possible, share the task between the team members - don’t let them do everything on their own. Remember that there is no such thing as a single-handed success: when you include and acknowledge all those in your corner, you propel yourself, your teammates and your supporters to greater heights.
As H. Jackson Brown Jr. said: “Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.” It’s what you do with it that counts.