The phrase “time management in the business world,” makes me think of the old saying, “time is money.” I’d actually argue with that statement. Instead, I contend that time is EVERYTHING! Time is the only truly finite commodity. In the business world, we can always find ways to acquire more staffing, more office or warehouse space, a bigger budget, more equipment, etc. But more time? Unfortunately, as I write these words, no one has invented the ability to gain more time—much to my disappointment.
So, why is it that even though we all have the exact same amount of time each day, we all know people who seemingly have squeezed a few more than 24 hours into theirs? More than likely, it is because they’ve found a way to use time management effectively to move throughout their day with ease. Here’s the good news: you can too! And you need to. Honestly, it is vital to your success as a leader. And particularly now, when we’re all looking for peacefulness and ease in our days, it will help you gain a new level of calmness about your work. I guarantee it!
In my last post, I discussed working with a trusted friend or a coach to honestly assess how your time management skills stand today. By doing that, it will give you a starting point for improving your time management in your business life. The next step that will be helpful is to start tracking how you actually spend your time. In her book, 168 Hours: How You Have More Time Than You Think, author Laura Vanderkam stresses the importance of tracking our time. She suggests using a spreadsheet sectioned off into thirty-minute slots to do this. I know… it sounds intense, but it’s an amazing exercise. You might be surprised at how much of your time flies out the window without you even realizing it. Once you have this written down in black and white, you will be able to move on to start creating a time management plan that will bring a welcomed change in how you use your time.
Here’s a time management pro-tip: working remotely requires organization, so get yourself a dedicated calendar. I prefer the old-fashioned pencil and paper-type calendar, and I’ve actually started recommending the large, monthly desk pad calendar my elementary school teachers used to have on their desks. It’s much easier to be able to see your month ahead at a glance and jot down any handwritten notes that will trigger you to follow through with important tasks because there is so much space.
If you’re finding you need some help with drawing up a blueprint of how to move your time management to the next level, I’m here to help. Just reach out! More on how to develop you time management skills next time. Until then, be well!