Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Time management skills are something that can be learned. Time management is a huge issue for many workplaces and can have a damaging effect on the business as well as on individuals. Sometimes there is bullying in the workplace making people feel their time is not effective, other times it is simply that the employee is unable to manage their time effectively.

Most people struggle with time management until they learn the skills needed to overcome this issue. It is about becoming more productive, less wasting of time and making sure that the right tasks are completed by the right people.

The Issue

Most people struggle with time management at some point in their lives. Work is busy, there are demands from their personal lives, and trying to fit in a visit to the gym seems impossible. For the business, poor time management from employees and managers can mean less work being completed on time, wasted time, increased costs and a lot of stress for everyone involved. For the individual, in the worst cases it can have devastating effects on health and wellbeing.

Step One

The first thing you need to do in order to manage your time more effectively is to define what is important and what actually needs to be done. Is it important as in there will be consequences if not completed. Or is it urgent as in the building is burning down. The issue is that most of us lump a lot of stuff into the urgent box, when actually it is simply important. We have all had experience of a manager who things that proof reading his report is urgent, when actually it can wait until tomorrow and what was actually really urgent was placing the stationery order in time for a large conference. The stationery order may have had far larger negative consequences if not completed in time, yet it got pushed aside for the proof reading report. Now you do not have enough pens for the conference.

Step Two

Plan, then plan some more. Spend some time every Sunday night to plan your week ahead. Or you could debrief on a Friday afternoon, what has been achieved this week and what are your priorities for the coming week. It is amazing how much calmer and in control you will feel once you have written out a to do list and you might actually find that there are less items on there than you thought you would have. Instead of having all these things swimming around in your head you have written them down in a clear format, and now you can work through each item in order of priority.

Step Three
Following on from step two, think about de cluttering your work area. If you can get rid of distractions you can be more productive. It is much easier to focus when things are in order and you know where to find things.

Finally, follow our tips for better time management.

1. Concentrate on one task at a time
2. Delegate when necessary
3. Be careful of paper work being double-handled
4. Set out simple plans and to do lists
5. Be prepared for deadlines to sometimes come out of the blue

Try to start with one thing, and then move through the other steps and tips. Time management can be mastered if you try to can reduce a lot of stress, money wasting and even bullying at workplace and people will be less stressed. Time management skills can be learned they just take some practice and a key factor in their success is getting your friends, family and colleagues involved. Ask for their support while you try to take back control of your time and see how more productive you become. Once you master the skills, you will feel calmer and more productive. This is not to say that there will not still be times when you are under the pump, and stressed or pressed for time. That is life and happens to all of us. But what you can manage is 90 percent of your time and also gain the skills to deal with the tough times when they come along.


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