- April 19, 2018
- by Kate Borucka
- 2 comments
Effective Time Management Tips
Are you a lazy or a productive person? Do you find it easy to manage time at work or you’d rather spend all day in bed, scrolling down the newsfeed and checking your e-mail? No matter what type of a person you are, managing time is something that enhances work.
The challenge appears when you work from home. We all know that there are always more exciting things to do at home than work. If you work in a company, you may be a victim to distractions, meetings, or co-workers asking you for help. In all these cases, work can turn into hell and time management doesn’t have to do anything with being well-organized anymore.
No worries! Here are 20 effective time management tips to increase your productivity:
Mark Twain said, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.” That means that whatever you have to do, choose the task or project that is the biggest, the most exhausting, and which takes most of your time to be finished and DO IT FIRST!
There are also other time management techniques that will help you with prioritization like the Eisenhower Matrix or RAG Rating System.
Do you get a headache when you think about all the work you have to do? All the tasks, projects, meetings, reports. It’s easy to get lost in the workload and the daily duties. If you organize every single thing into a specific plan and turn your tasks into goals, time management will become natural.
Then, all the difficulties will slowly disappear.
3. Set Real Goals
We all want to be superheroes at work and do as much as we can. But let’s be honest, it’s impossible. First of all, you need to know your strengths and weaknesses to know how much you can do. If you set goals which are too difficult, to distant, you may not be able to reach them. Sometimes you may need more resources, more time or simply more knowledge. Step by step and you will achieve even the toughest goals.
4. Make To-do Lists
Either in the electronic or more traditional, paper form, to-do lists are still up-to-date. Moreover, they have so many fancy features that it’s even more fun to use them.
Write down everything you need to do and cross out the tasks you’ve already finished to stay on top of your work. With to-do lists, you always know how much work you have left. And you can be sure you won’t miss a thing!
Try Trello, which also works as a great project management software. With its efficient power-ups, you can boost your productivity even more.
5. Time Tracking? You bet!
Time tracking is one of the most effective time management practices. Of course, it’s all about tracking your work hours, being able to see how much time you spend on particular activities each day, and organizing your work more efficiently. These days, some of the better time tracking tools offer other features which, in fact, are crucial when it comes to time and work management, for example:
- variety of integrations,
- detailed reports,
- desktop app (it’s terrific when you don’t have to switch between time tracking software and your work, right?)
TimeCamp is among time tracking tools with all these features (and even more). Because we know that effective time management is crucial to your success.
Are you ready for effective time management with TimeCamp? Register now for free to discover wonders of time management with time tracking!
Keep your eyes on the prize, not on everything that’s happening around. Keep your thoughts and hands on the tasks you’re currently doing to perform it efficiently and quickly switch from one to Focus helps you get deeper into your project and solve all problems immediately. You can’t think about that yesterday’s baseball game and do that important report for your most important client at the same time. You don’t want to give it to him with the name of your favorite team written on the margin just because you couldn’t focus…
7. Use Technology
Technology is ubiquitous. Sometimes it’s even impossible to do things without using it. The same goes for work. When you use proper tools, apps or software, your work will become incredibly smooth and easy!
But remember, technology is there to help us, not to slave us! Using too much of it may actually turn out to be a waste of time (spending time on social media, checking things you don’t really need to know).
8. Learn to Say “No”
There is a certain limit to which we can work. And after you cross that line, your work’s efficacy may actually come down to zero. If you feel like you’re already buried under all the paperwork or the project your boss wants to give you is way too much for you, say no. Be assertive to avoid stress and exhaustion. Eventually, they both lead to the decrease in productivity. And when you’re less productive, you’re not able to manage your time properly.
Use calendars, for example, Outlook calendar, Google calendar, teamup (works great for teams), or WhichTime to have all your dates under control. Plan meetings, deadlines and follow project’s progress in time. It’s easy to get lost in time and forget all the dates.
10. Take Breaks
Working in one long string may seem a good idea in a short term because you may be able to finish a task or a project in one sitting. But when you look at the big picture, overworking causes more harm than good. You easily get tired and lose your focus.
Research conducted at the University of Illinois by psychology professor Alejandro Lleras showed that it’s important to take breaks:
“From a practical standpoint, our research suggests that, when faced with long tasks (such as studying before a final exam or doing your taxes), it is best to impose brief breaks on yourself. Brief mental breaks will actually help you stay focused on your task!”
You are not a robot and are not able to do everything yourself. It’s okay to ask your employees do things for you. Especially if they are much better at certain things than you.
12. Block Out Distractions
Turn off Facebook, your phone, e-mail, and all other things that draw your attention away from work. They stimulate us to procrastinate and waste time on unproductive activities.
13. Break Larger Tasks into Smaller Ones
Working on a massive project may be challenging. Especially if it comprises of many different aspects. It’s good to break those large tasks into smaller ones and work on them partially. This will help you avoid chaos.
14. Write EVERYTHING Down
Even if it means sticking colorful sticky notes all around your room, desk, or office! Writing down your ideas, things to do, notes, dates, term or anything else is the best idea not to forget about anything. And when you keep looking at all these sticky notes, you know these are things you have to do sooner or later. It’s a great motivation to start acting!
15. Get Crystal Clear on Your Tasks
Prepare and analyze your project before you start doing anything. You can create a list of things you should consider when working on tasks. Make a knowledge base with all the resources. Have everything prepared and you will avoid complications.
16. Set Reminders
Most calendars have the option of reminding you about a meeting, deadline coming to an end, etc. Set reminders a day, week or hours before the thing you have to do not to be surprised by it when you think you’re done with your work for the week. Nobody likes finding out that there’s one more thing to do… in the middle of the night when we’re automatically checking our calendar before going to sleep!
17. Don’t Multitask
We all know that multitasking is bad for our brain. When multitasking, we lose focus, productivity, motivation, and, above all, time. Do one thing at a time and then switch to another.
18. Audit Your Time
Auditing time sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? In fact, it’s the best way to manage your time effectively. Checking your weekly reports can give you an in-depth insight into your work time, routines and habits. That can help you assess how much time you should actually be spending on certain tasks.
19. Give Yourself Rewards
Some tasks are more difficult than the others. When you feel like you’ve done something big, give yourself a treat. Go for that big cup of coffee, a huge bar of chocolate or that book about motivation you saw in the local bookshop yesterday! Rewarding also works as a great motivator and teaches persistence and precision.
20. Create a Daily Plan…
…and stick to it. That way you will develop certain habits. Once you have those habits, work will become smooth.