You have many other things that you would like to accomplish, but just can not find any extra time in the day. How can you take on something else when you schedule is already packed. It may even be something fun, but you just can not manage it. The good news is that you can learn to be more efficient and also learn where you are wasting time. Most people do not even realize that they do.
One of the biggest problems is people believe if they start earlier and work later they are a good worker. Everyone trying to stay at the office just a little later than the next person to make it look like they are working just a little harder than everyone else. This is completely unnecessary. If you bring results, then your boss will value your hard work regardless of how long you stay in the office. If he / she does not, then it may be time to find someone who does.
The first step to time management is to value your time. Realize that all the time you waste at work is time you could be using to increase your income and spend more time enjoying the things you really want. If you value your time, you will be a lot less likely to let yourself or others waste it.
Next is to group similar tasks and complete all of that task at a certain time. For instance, if you need to make phone calls, do them all in the morning or afternoon rather then here and there scattered through out the day. Not only will your technique get better by doing them this way, but you can do it faster because your mind is only doing one type of task
It is also important to complete one task at a time. Multitasking is not efficient. People like to think that they are very talented because they can multitask, but it is slower and you usually will not do the job as good.
Once you have your tasks grouped, you need to put the 80/20 rule to use. it is very likely that 80% of your results come from about 20% of your work. Or otherwise that 2 of the 10 things you do are responsible for most of your results. Find out what they are and do them better. Figure out they rest and see what you can eliminate. There is a good chance that your tasks you an eliminate are also the ones that take up a lot of your time.
Learn to say no. People are constantly trying to get you to do things that are not important to your job or maybe do not need to be done at all. Learn to tactfully say “no”. You have just gotten rid of extra activities, you do not need anymore.
One way to avoid having to say know is limit your social activity. Basically, do not let colleges bother you at work. In order to work effectively, you must be able to concentrate. People constantly bothering you with questions, comments, or just wanting to talk distracts you and slows down your pace. When people come to you, tell them “hi” person’s name, “I am very busy right now, how can I help you”. If they start rambling on, repeat again that you are very busy and ask them to send you an e-mail. you an then deal with this e-mail when you deal with all your e-mails together. Another trick, and one recommended by Timothy Ferris in the 4 Hour Work Week, is to wear headphones like you are listening to music. People are much less likely to bother you. Especially when you look very busy. This one has worked great for me.
One of the keys to avoiding long drawn out conversations is to avoid meetings whenever possible. It’s true that there are times for meetings, but many times it is just people getting together because they want to talk or waste time. If someone wants to have a meeting, always find out why and what the point it is. Many times it is something that can be answered over the phone.
When you are working, work hard. But do take small breaks every once in a while to refresh. Your mind and body need a chance to relax and restart. Just be careful not to take breaks every 20 minutes.
Time management is about valuing your time. Increasing your efficiency at work is actually pretty simple once you believe your time is precious. The better you get at these techniques the more you will be able to get done.
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