Do you feel like you waste a lot of time at work? A survey by salary.com shows that 89% of respondents admitted to wasting time at work. Everyone wants to be more productive and do better time management at work so they waste less time.
Good time management skills enable you to end your work faster and better. Time management skills are a desired skill of employers in an employee, it will enable you to land a promotion or a new job very easily. This skill gives you an edge over all the other employees.
But how can you be better at time management?
Time management is all about planning your available time and controlling the time you are spending on a specific task in order to use your time more efficiently and be as productive as possible.
Here are 4 tips, taking action on these will help you manage your time better and will improve your productivity drastically at work.
1. Set Daily Goals
Setting a daily goal means setting a goal and an aim for your whole day. Your daily goal will be what you want to achieve at the end of the day at work.
A daily goal at work gives you a direction for the day. It eliminates the phase of your day where you wonder what to do and waste time. Having a clear goal in your mind gives you the opportunity to plan your time well around the goal and gives you a constant pace without confusion between tasks. Overall you become able to manage time well and waste less time. It significantly increases productivity at work.
You can set a goal by answering some questions yourself;
- How much work do I want to complete at the end of the day?
- What is the main task(s) I have to get done today?
- What is desirable work out of me today?
Write the answers down, and the amount of work you get will be your goal for today. For example, my goal for today is to write and publish this article along with making graphics for this article.
Always remember that a goal when not written down is like a cigarette’s smoke, it drifts away and disappears. It’s certainly important to write down your goals on paper, doing this will avoid you from forgetting your goal and it gets fed into your brain. That goal is materialized now and makes more sense for your subconscious brain. Writing down goals is the habit of successful people.
2. Plan Out Your Day
Next after setting a goal for the day, planning for the day is essential to achieve your daily goal. Both goal and plan go together. Planning your day includes making a list of tasks you have to do in order to achieve your daily goal at work and prioritizing tasks on that list.
Planning your day out helps you to cut through the noise of work and bring out only tasks that are important to achieve the daily goal. Having this daily plan helps you to decrease the time you waste on unimportant tasks and increase your productivity at work. Planning in the form of a checklist gives you a sense of accomplishment and motivates you every time you tick off a task.
So, how to plan for the day?
Taking a paper, you can use the same paper you wrote your goal on. Start by brainstorming all the tasks you have to do to accomplish your daily work goal. Don’t care much about the tasks while writing, just put them on paper for now. After you are done doing this, you have to organize your list.
How to organize your list?
You have to arrange your tasks on the list in a manner of both importance and priority. You will have 2 sequences of tasks. If you mash up these arrangements of tasks you will get your final order for the tasks list with the first task being the most important and urgent at the same time to achieve your daily goal.
The resultant list of tasks will be how you will work your day. This way you will deprioritize the tasks that are unimportant to achieve your goal, waste less time, and become more productive. This work like magic when it comes to time management at work
3. Stop Multitasking
Stop Multitasking means not performing multiple tasks at work but rather focusing on a single task at a time. It is a proven fact that completing three tasks by focusing on them one at a time takes less time than doing all of them at once.
This article shows how multitasking reduces productivity. People who are proud of their multitasking skills and believe that they are productive are actually less productive than people who focus on one task at a time.
When you focus on what task at a time you save your time ultimately improving your time management at work and making you more productive. It will help you with focusing better, not getting distracted by other tasks in between, and enjoying your work stress-free. It helps you to get into the flow. It will increase your productivity by 500%
So, what are you going to do?
Give up multitasking and focus on one task at a time. Give one task your all attention and brain to do the best job as fast as possible.
Now, whenever you sit down to work, complete one task at a time and don’t start the second task till you tick off first on the plan list you made.
4. Take Breaks
Taking a break means taking a small rest from whatever task you are doing. It’s just a 5-10 minute break to give your brain some rest so you don’t lose complete focus.
Our brain naturally starts to lose focus on anything it is doing if done for a long period of time. So it’s important to take a small 5-10 minutes break every time you feel like you are losing your focus on work. Taking this break will revive your dying focus on work and refresh your mind. It saves you from wasting much more time by getting distracted while doing work.
How to take a break is pretty self-explanatory. During your break, change your environment. If you work in an office, cabin or computer make sure to get out of that work environment. It’s great to review your list during this break and have some fresh air. Avoid social media at all costs during this break.
When you will come back from your small break, you will have a fresh focus and you will be ready to focus on your task for a long time again.
If you implement all these tips in your working day, you will notice a prominent increase in productivity, and your time management skills at work will increase.
When to start?
RIGHT NOW! All the tips given above have actionable steps for them, you can take action to them right now and increase your overall value by start developing good time management skills.
The only thing you will require is discipline to work on it, you will require discipline for everything you want to achieve. Be disciplined and work on yourself to become the person you were born to be.