Most people feel like they have too much to do, or there isn't enough time in the day. Sometimes this is the case, but before talking to your manager about future resourcing needs, let’s see if we can help you out.
Effective time management is one of the most important skills you can have and it can help you find more time to hit your targets, or completely reset your priorities. Organising your time management activities should be restricted to the time before the activities themselves take place, so finding time for preparation will save you time in the long run.
Top 10 list of Time Management tips:
1. Create To-Do lists.
These can be done in a notebook, on white boards or on phones using apps like Trello (https://trello.com/) and Todoist (https://en.todoist.com/). I’ve recently started using Momentum, the Google Chrome and Firefox browser Add-on, it’s great to keep reminding yourself of what you need to do while dealing with the corruptive urge to surf the web. Everyone knows there’s nothing more satisfying than ticking off tasks as you complete them. Yes, it is cheating to add smaller tasks just to tick them off.
2. Schedule less.
Less is more… it’s extremely important for enabling you to complete tasks. No-one achieves their best when drowning in tasks.
3. Prioritise the most important tasks
…then when you inevitably get distracted, all the important tasks are complete and you may realise, less important tasks do not really matter. Always think about what the Importance of a task is vs. its Urgency.
4. Setting achievable goals
…is the best way to measure progress. By creating realistic goals, which can be achieved in a reasonable amount of time, we can start to see results. Break larger tasks down into smaller more definable targets.
5. Learn time-boxing.
We all know that one person who keeps the 20 minute meeting going for an hour to have a chat or discuss irrelevant points. By time boxing and setting tasks or meetings to a specific time frame, you can save a lot of potentially wasted time by keeping the people who enjoy the banter on target.
6. Minimise procrastination
…by eliminating online distractions, like that Facebook or Twitter tab that’s still sneakily open on your desktop. You can use software such as the chrome extension StayFocused, restricting the amount of time you can spend on time-wasting websites. Once your allotted time is up, the extension blocks you for the rest of the day.
7. Don’t leave emails sitting in your inbox.
Leaving emails sitting there can lead to huge build ups of information (and anxiety) which needs to be dealt with eventually. People can deal with this in different ways. For example, once opened, process them immediately, it saves a lot of time re-reading and sorting. You might allocate specific times in the day to look at and deal with your emails — 09:00/13:00/04:00, each for only 15 minutes.
8. Plan for the unexpected.
Leaving small blocks of time throughout the day to deal with unexpected surprises can help you manage and control your day.
9. Find out when you work best.
Are you a morning lark or a night owl? Figuring this out can help you manage when to complete your most important work. Prioritise work around your elevated energy levels.
10. Take breaks.
Breaks are important to recharge, reenergise, and allow your brain to organise information. http://www.donothingfor2minutes.com/