Every minute of every day brings multiple choices for how to spend your time, whether it’s whether to send an email or call on the phone, work on a project or go to lunch with your team. It can be hard to keep track of all these decisions, let alone prioritize them effectively, which is why so many people struggle with time management skills. Fortunately, there are several strategies you can use to help you make the best use of your time and boost your productivity at work and home.
Why is Time Management Important?
Time management is essential for professionals of all industries and careers. Without it, you can find yourself bogged down by miscommunication and unnecessary meetings or activities that could be better spent on real tasks. In a study of entrepreneurs, 24% said poor time management caused their companies delays and 11% said it kept them from achieving financial goals. However, with a little planning and an editorial calendar, you can go from drowning in a sea of responsibilities to making improvements in your output – both professionally and personally. Take some advice from experts on how to spend your time effectively so you don’t find yourself continually missing deadlines.
8 Time Management Strategies to Boost Productivity
Now that you know the significance of using time effectively, it’s about time we began discussing the best time usage methodologies to help efficiency.
1) Put your phone away
Communication breakdowns happen all too often and more often than not, they’re due to a lack of communication. If you’re working remotely, consider setting aside a work-from-home day once a week where your team is forced to work from their home offices. This ensures that everyone stays on top of their responsibilities and feels comfortable asking questions if necessary. Staying connected with your team should be easy; never let distance get in between you and success!
2) Block off time in your calendar
If you’re a remote employee, set aside certain times in your calendar for work-related activities (and don’t let other people schedule meetings during those times!). If you do have an office, try blocking off time on your calendar. It helps keep distractions at bay and gives you greater control over when you get important tasks done. Most importantly, though: it lets other people know that you value your time management!
3) Make a list and check it twice
Planning your day (and life) ahead of time is an effective way to boost productivity. By taking 10 minutes each morning or at night before bed, you can evaluate what went well and what didn’t during your day. That way, you know what to prioritize for tomorrow. Make a list of things that need doing and check them off as you go through your day; it’s one of those simple methods that work!
4) Set clear priorities
There’s always something more you could be doing that’s just a fact of life. But if you don’t set priorities, your time gets eaten up by less important tasks that end up stalling your progress. As a rule of thumb, do what will have the biggest impact and avoid activities that take away from that.
5) Prioritize tasks by importance, not urgency
Many people prioritize their tasks according to urgency something is either a crisis or it’s not, and if it is, then it gets attention. But for those who tend to procrastinate, especially on low-priority tasks that aren’t urgent, prioritizing by importance will help you clear space in your schedule for work that has higher value but isn’t necessarily pressing.
6) Get enough sleep
It may sound counterintuitive, but getting enough sleep increases productivity. People who get 6 hours of sleep or less are 12% less productive than those who get 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Moreover, sleep deprivation impairs memory and learning ability.
7) Use technology wisely, don’t let it use you
With so many distractions out there, it’s difficult not to get drawn into a game of Clash of Clans or send another Snapchat. Whether you’re an entrepreneur looking for a more productive day or someone who needs some guidance on how to better manage your time, here are eight-time management strategies that can boost productivity in no time.
8) Do what works for you!
For some, morning is when you’re at your most productive. For others, the evening is your most fruitful time. The bottom line is that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for managing your time, so be realistic about what works best for you and what doesn’t. This will help you set yourself up for success without feeling like you need to follow someone else’s rules.
The importance of time management is clear: Being able to manage your time allows you to make sure that everything in your life gets done. The right time-management strategies are helpful but not critical; what’s crucial is having a plan and following it, no matter how busy you are. Beating procrastination can mean taking small steps every day it’s an important habit, but a manageable one.