Time management is basically the division of tasks into available man-hours in the best way to maximize efficiency and achieve the required results. How you manage time has a direct influence on your stress level and this in turn will be visible to your team.
The way you classify tasks and the delegation thereof is determined by how you manage time.
Time management is a form of self-discipline and the way you think and react to certain conditions will influence the outcome of your decision making process. If not done right managing your time can be stressful on its own.
Today managers have technology to assist in their time management process but unfortunately these methods manage the manager and not his time. So many people today will admit that they cannot function if they do not have some sort of electronic device that can tell them what must happen next.
These electronic devices itself is a major time waster and distraction from the real world. True time management must come from yourself and must be based on your decision of the importance and preferences of processes.
This is what the human brain was designed to do – Analyze and make decisions.
Influences on how time is managed and utilized can come from anywhere and at any time.
These are called time wasters and some of them are:
- Telephones are the biggest intruder and disruption of time.
- People with not enough work and too much free time coming for chit chat
- Superiors with the need to check up and ask stupid questions at regular interval
- Lazy and unproductive staff that must be guided and coached all the time.
- Incomplete work processes requiring constant monitoring.
- Incorrect assumptions in allocating priorities to tasks.
- Unrealistic projects or “dream” chasers which will never materialize.
It is the duty of the manager to identify and eliminate these time wasters. It does not mean that people are not allowed the occasional chit chat which is also important to the structure of general business.
It is when they do it and how much time they spend doing it that must be managed. All time wasters becomes none time wasters when it is managed.
There are many time management methods available on the internet but the most important factor is that you must be able to prioritize tasks according to its importance within the complete business process.
Factors to consider when distributing tasks to available time are:
- Importance of task both in procedural and monetary value.
- Available resources to speed up the specific task.
- Delegation of the task and the available competence to perform these tasks.
- Who else does the task impact on if not done?
What is essential and what is junk is a decision that only you can make after evaluating the set of tasks to be managed. Good time management can only have positive effects on the running of your department and the organization as a whole.
Applying time management skills in the workplace will ensure that:
- Work is flowing smoothly
- Processes can be maintained
- Work and productivity measurement will become easier
- Staff morale increases and they become more motivate
- End results become more positive
- Space is left for innovation and expansion of business
Your expertise as a manager should enable you to make these decisions easily. At the end of the day the priority must suit the organization’s visions and goals. It takes discipline to maintain a continuous program of time management but you will find that as a manager the benefits are greater than the pain you go through.