As managers, you want to make the most of one your most valuable resources – time. However, sometimes, despite our best intentions, we become so caught up in our day-to-day to routines that we don’t realize that we no longer be using our time wisely.
Because people and processes can change, so will how you can best manage your time. Over the course of your career, you value-added work may evolve. And while your sense of accountability won’t change, your responsibilities might.
When it comes to time management, the key is to regularly take a step back and analyze if your process for getting things done is still effective. And it’s also worthwhile to re-examine if what you thought you knew about time management is true. It may surprise you to learn that despite your passion, you may have been approaching time management and productivity all wrong. Here’s what you may not know about time management:
Setting Personal Goals is Key
Part of a manager’s value-added work is setting goals for the team and deciding what work needs to get done to meet those goals. They then divide the work into manageable activities, thoughtfully selecting which individual has the right skills and resources to accomplish the tasks that need to be done.
While this is all good and on track with good time management, a manager who fails to set their individual goals won’t be able to assess how productive they are. Motivation is essential to productivity. Because managers often have to self-manage, it is up to them to self-motivate and reward themselves with incentives when they’ve achieved a goal or objective that they’ve set.
Multitasking Doesn’t Mean You Will Get More Done
Doing multiple things doesn’t mean that you will get more things done faster. In truth, multitasking may result in you getting nothing done at all. And if you happen to accomplish something, chances are that you’ve made mistakes. And when a task if full of errors, you’re likely to have to do it all over again.
One of best time management tips that has stood the test of time regardless of evolving management styles and trends is that you should always work on one task at a time. Don’t move onto the next task until you have finished the current one in its entirety.
Breaks Aren’t All Bad
There’s a difference between taking multiple breaks in a day as a way to avoid work and procrastinate and taking short breaks throughout your day as a way to recharge. Breaks are often necessary as working through eyestrain, headaches, and lower back pain can lead to poor performance.
Breaks aren’t just limited to having a cup of coffee or taking a power nap; breaks can be a brisk 15-minute walk outside or finding a quiet room to meditate. In fact, meditation has proven to improve concentration and give you a boost of energy.
Being Busy Isn’t the Same as Being Productive
People have often misinterpreted a busy person as a productive one. However, an employee who is constantly scrambling to get things done isn’t necessarily someone who’s been given so much responsibility that it takes up every minute of their day. In most cases, a busy person means that they haven’t managed their time well and are now frantically trying to meet their deadlines.
Here’s what we do know about time management; without effectively managing your time, your productivity will suffer. And as a manager, remember that you have a team that relies on your leadership to organize, motivate, and develop them.
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