You may already know that time management is important in the workplace, but you may not know exactly what it means or how to get better at it. Time management consists of a set of skills that work together to help you be more efficient. Like any skill, the more you work on them, the more they will improve. Here is what you need to know.
Breaking Down Projects
Time management skills are all about making things happen more efficiently. So the first step is to break down each project into a set of actionable goals and assigning a timeline to each one. Also, consider attaching a small reward to each goal so that you have something to look forward to when it’s complete. You can give yourself a bigger reward when you finish the entire project.
There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to complete everything on the to-do list for most people. This means you’ll need to prioritize. Once you’ve broken down your projects into actionable goals with timelines, decide which day you’ll take on each goal. There is an art to this, as you’ll need to be realistic about how long each thing will take, and you’ll need to be aware of which tasks are the most urgent. But with a bit of practice, you’ll get a feel for it. Don’t forget the 80/20 rule: never schedule more than 80 percent of your day, as you’ll need the remaining time to cover unexpected tasks that pop up.
Time blocking is next-level daily scheduling. Time blocking means mapping out your day rather than just putting daily appointments and goals into your calendar. You might set aside 30 minutes in the morning for your email, then an hour for an urgent task, followed by a 45-minute client meeting. If you’ve done well with prioritizing, time blocking should be a simple matter of laying out the time you’ve determined each item will take.
Delegating means giving responsibility for specific action items to someone else. The reality is that we all have our strong points and weaker areas, and it isn’t necessarily the best use of your time to slog through tasks that don’t match your strengths. Delegating certain tasks can move an entire project faster while freeing you to do the things you do best.
Time management isn’t just one thing. It’s a set of skills that you can practice and improve over time.
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