When life gets hectic, it’s vitally important to keep on top of things and that’s when effective time management becomes essential. From breaking things down into a daily plan to learning how to say no, these 10 time management tips can make you more efficient in your working life and in turn make your everyday life more enjoyable. Check out another 10 time management tips to help you be more productive around the home too.
Adopt a daily plan
Forward planning is an essential part of being efficient and having a long-term plan provides a path. However, you need to break that plan into manageable segments to maintain focus. By setting daily plans you’ll be more target-orientated and spend less time being pulled away from the job at hand.
Set time limits
Within your daily, weekly and monthly plans set time limits to keep things moving forward. Deadlines can bring pressure but they can also limit procrastination, the mother of all time wasters!
Learn to say no and delegate
Learning how to say no can save so much time, especially when the tasks you’re being asked to do can be done by someone else. Don’t be afraid to either say no to something or to delegate the task to someone who has time to get it done.
Complete tasks that are time sensitive first and make sure you keep an eye on your priorities. Again, this will help you focus on what you need to do and not get side tracked.
Don’t stress the small stuff
Sometimes we get bogged down in minor details, which in the long run really aren’t that important. Establish what is significant and pay close attention to that, rather than getting stuck wasting time on small tasks – just get them done.
Put your phone to sleep
When you’ve got a really important task to complete, cutting out distractions will speed things up. Put your phone on airplane mode or divert to someone who can take important calls and resist the urge to check emails unnecessarily. As long as you’ve set up a way for someone to get hold of you if it’s urgent, you won’t miss anything.
Make use of your phone
We’ve mentioned how getting away from your phone can help with time management, but your phone can also be an asset to make your life work organised. Emailing on the go, video calls, apps that manage your day… the list goes on. Familiarise yourself with what’s going to work for you and use your phone to its full potential.
Set up a collaborative network
When you’re working in a team, having one point of contact will certainly save you time. If the team can log in and see what needs doing, they won’t need to call you to discuss each task every time.
Give yourself a buffer
We’ve talked already about setting limits for certain tasks and how that can save time, and by building in a five to 10 minute buffer at the end of that limit you’ll have time to tie things off neatly. Set an alarm so you know when the buffer starts so you’ll have time to wrap everything up and move on.
The last of our 10 time management tips is to automate when you can. The more you can make things automatic the more time you’re going to save. It might be invoicing, sending out meeting reminders or banking. The less hands on you have to be the better!