How to improve time management in the workplace?

Time management in the workplace

Time management is a basic skill that must be mastered by a man (woman) in business. It consists in increasing the effectiveness of action through more effective use of time. The term is most often used in the context of work or career, but time management principles can be applied to all spheres of life.

Generally speaking, it is all about using time properly, so that more can be done and thus increase the probability of success.

It is essential that we set ourselves the goal that we are going to achieve. A good formulation of intentions is essential for effective action.

Research has shown that people who set themselves clear goals (which is unfortunately only 3% of the population) are the most successful.

The SMARTER principle in time management in the workplace

Characteristics of a well-formulated goal are defined by the SMARTER principle, named after the first letters of English words describing these features:

S – specific
M – measurable
A – ambitious
R – realistic
T – time oriented
E – exciting
R – recorded

So a well-formulated goal should be objective enough to make it clear what you want to achieve in concrete terms. It should be measurable – you have to specify when it will be known that the goal has been achieved. It is also worth to impose a time frame and divide the plans into long and short term. The fact that the goal is ambitious and exciting should increase our motivation. And finally, the goal must be achievable, because as Graham Greene, the English playwright, claims: “Despair is the price we pay for setting ourselves an unattainable goal.

Hierarchy of time management activities in the workplace

First of all, important and urgent things need to be tackled, and secondly, time needs to be devoted to important but less urgent things. Planning is an important element of good use of time and effective action, so after setting a goal (in accordance with the Smarter rules of course) larger tasks (long-term goals or complex projects) should be broken down into smaller tasks, so that even in the case of distant plans, it is possible to start working towards their implementation today.

Good organisation of work

The basis for good organisation of work is a properly drawn up plan. Developing a plan is more than just writing a list of things to do. Tasks must be recorded in an appropriate way and the plan must also be supplemented in an appropriate way on an ongoing basis. This can be done as follows:

– list of tasks – the list must be exhaustive, although in the form of short notes. It is difficult to work with a very complex the plan.
– estimate as accurately as possible the time it will take to complete the project of each task.
– add time for unforeseen accidents – usually everything takes more time than estimated. Also take into account repeating activities that you do every day on an ongoing basis.
– prioritise – this is a key, extremely important aspect time management.

Overcoming “mental barriers”.

Many people associate good organization with stiffness and numbness, although in reality, better control over one’s time gives freedom and the opportunity to relax. It can also be hampered by negative self-esteem, which can result in a lack of confidence in the ability to change and an opinion of one’s own incompetence, as well as limiting the belief that traits such as delay or distraction are a permanent and unchanging characteristic of the person concerned.

This, too, is not true, because it is known that a person is able to change his or her habits, provided that he or she very much wishes to do so. Meanwhile, it seems that the main source of ineffectiveness is resistance to changing one’s habits, as this always requires discipline and effort.

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