Michael Zammuto, Reputation Changer President, knows the value of good time management skills. It’s said that 20 percent of your thoughts produce 80 percent of your results. This applies to anything from exercise to friendships; but most importantly to work. If you work smarter instead of harder, you’ll be able to maximize your thoughts and your time for greater output and results.
Provided below are five tips for improving your time management skills.
#1: Prioritize your responses
You don’t have to answer a phone just because it’s ringing, and you don’t have to answer every email that pops up. Learning how to prioritize your to dos by importance or deadline is the most useful skill in time management. This isn’t to suggest that you should be remiss or stop responding to co-workers or potential clients. It means having a deeper knowledge of which responses are most important, and which can wait. If you have a small client that doesn’t give you a lot of business, give them respect. But don’t let their multiple requests get in the way of a client that does give you a lot of business. Priority is everything.
#2: Make a timed to do list
If your to do list keeps piling up, it will become more intimidating to look at. Soon, you may not even want to start it. Write a short to do list, and always a deliverable date next to it. This way you can organize what needs to be done first and when. Once you cross a few things off of your list, refresh it. It will make you feel better that you’ve accomplished a lot of your to dos, and your small list will energize you for your next task.
#3: Write it down
Many organized individuals keep a detailed schedule and calendar. Some enjoy using an electronic organizer, such as apps available on their smart phone. But the old fashioned technique of penciling or penning in important tasks and appointments into a daily planner actually helps with memorizing it. So, if you don’t have a personal or daily planner, get one, and start adding events, meetings, and activities for as far out as you have scheduled.
#4: Get rid of distractions
A good rule of thumb is to stay off social media sites, personal emails, and cell phones while at work. Not only does it waste time when you have a task to complete, it can even monopolize your down time. If you complete your to dos for the day and devote an hour to Facebook, you’re wasting precious time in getting a jump on tomorrow’s list. Unless it’s absolutely necessary for your business, take social media out of your work environment.
#5: Plan your day
The first 30 minutes of your day should go to planning your day. If the last 30 minutes of the night before is better for you, that time can be utilized as well. Planning means going through your appointments, meeting agendas, and deliverables. You can reprioritize your day and your list better at the beginning of the day than the middle. Plus, you’ll feel more confident with your ability to handle the day.
As Michael Zammuto Reputation Changer President will attest, good time management skills are extremely useful in the workplace. Hopefully the tips above, provided by Michael Zammuto, will prove useful to anyone who needs a bit more help in organizing their daily schedules.