Professionals in various lines of work understand the importance of managing time. It is one of the most important resources for businesses. That is why many organizations are willing to spend their money and effort to make sure that everyone in their team is using their time wisely. From providing training to using time management tools, an organization can take advantage of different methods to manage time better. And if you are a professional who would like to make the most of your time, these time management tips will definitely help you improve your overall productivity.
Set Up a To-Do List
The best way to jumpstart your time management effort is by creating a to-do list. This will serve as your guide as you work on accomplishing your tasks daily. With a to-do list as your guide, you will be able to gauge the amount of work that you need to accomplish within a day and how much time you will have to set to accomplish each task. A to-do list can also give you a better visual or how much work you have waiting for you, which helps you be mentally prepared for a busy day ahead.
Set a Time Limit for Each Task
Once you have a list of things to do for the day, you should now proceed to setting a time limit for each of your tasks. If you want to be at your most productive, you should see to it that you accomplish as many tasks as possible within a specific amount of time. Your goal is to set a time that is short enough to help you manage all your tasks, and long enough for you to accomplish a specific task. By setting a time limit for your tasks, you get to make the most of your time daily.
Plan Your Tasks Accordingly
Another great practice to help you maximize your productivity is by mindfully mapping out your daily tasks. The goal here is to optimize your productivity, so you should see to it that you plan your tasks to make it easier for you to accomplish them. This includes anticipating your future needs. For example, if your tasks for the day include you doing an office supply run and printing out a bulk of documents, you can do a supply run first, making sure to buy everything you need to print all your documents. You get to save time this way since you won’t have to go back to the store again just to get more printing supplies once you run out.
Take Advantage of Productivity Tools
To help you keep track of your tasks and time better, you can take advantage of the many tech tools that are now available online. Nowadays, a professional is free to try out and choose from the hundreds of personal and office productivity tools that can be easily accessed online. Whether you decide to use downloadable apps to manage time or use browser-based productivity tools, it is your choice. It can be a Scrum board, a calendar, or a Kanban board for personal productivity or for work. What matters is that you pick a tool that suits your needs. A good visual project management tool will definitely come in handy in helping you accomplish your tasks on time and for you to stick to your plan.
Accomplish MITs in the Morning
If you are one of those people who feel more productive early in the morning, then it’s best that get right to completing your most important tasks (MITs) in the morning. It’s one of the best strategies for managing time because you get to complete your MITs as soon as possible. This is a better approach since once the important tasks are done, you won’t have to worry about them for the rest of the day. Once you get those MITs out of the way, you can now focus your undivided attention to your other tasks.
Staying focused on your work is not always easy. Whether you are working from home or in the office, there will always be something to distract you and pull you away from your work. So one of the most important strategies for time management is keeping distraction away from your workspace. If you have the option to choose a space for your work desk, especially if you work from home, it’s better that you set it up somewhere that will help you stay away from things that can easily distract you. It will also help if you have a dedicated home office wherein no one can disturb you while you’re working. Another time management skill that a professional should master is discipline. With better control towards your urges, you won’t easily get distracted. It can be your television or a beep from your phone, but if you stick to your guns, you won’t easily get distracted by anything around you.
Delegate or Outsource Whenever Necessary
There will be times when things will get so overwhelming. Apart from work, you will surely have other personal matters to take care of. And if you think you need some help, you might want to consider getting one instead of trying to accomplish everything all on your own. No matter how good you are at implementing various techniques to manage time, there will still be times when you will need to delegate your work. You can either assign some of your tasks to your teammates, or if you work on your own, you might want to outsource your tasks to some freelancers to help you get your pending tasks done on time. This way, you get to unburden yourself and be able to focus your efforts on core functions that need your attention.
Refresh by Taking Small Frequent Breaks
Overworking is another thing that you should work on avoiding if you want to be better with time management. Straining yourself, especially if you do it too often, will eventually affect your body and mind, which can hinder your productivity. To maintain a healthy work and life balance, you can consider adopting the Pomodoro technique, wherein you set a 25-minute limit when working on tasks. After 25 minutes, a short 5-minute break will follow, allowing you to rest before repeating the same cycle. With the Pomodoro technique, you get to manage your time and your energy, so that you can avoid feeling stressed.
Needless to say, a professional is always expected to understand the importance of time management. So no matter what line of work you may be in, these tips for managing time will surely come in handy. And if you are thinking about using Kanban for office work or as a part of your personal productivity tools, consider using Kanban Zone. As part of your time management apps, this browser-based visual project management tool can also help you and your team improve your focus and your overall productivity.