Top 17 Time Management Skills to be Best on the Job
This post provides exhaustive information about time management skills you can develop to be effective in your career and personal life.
Time is a free gift of nature and is equally distributed among all humans.
Time is important in every human endeavor, especially in the workplace; it is to be managed and not wasted.
Time management goes a long way to determining the success and future of a company.
Employers are after people who can coordinate activities in the workplace within the stipulated time and deliver an excellent job.
Time management is a special skill to be harnessed by anyone who wants to be successful in the workplace; a minute in the workplace is vital to the growth of a business.
What is Time Management?
Time management is the judicious or proper use of time to produce the desired result, or to achieve the set goal of an organization.
Every business organization has an aim of existence which is maximizing profit while minimizing cost.
To achieve this requires a lot of experience in time management. This is because, every single minute in the workplace matters and can make a difference in the general output of the business.
This article will address the various skills and qualities one needs to have to have an effective time management situation in the workplace and elsewhere, to aid the growth of the organization.
Here are top 18 time management skills and qualities to develop to achieve much more within the allotted time:
Organization is a key factor that determines how well time can be managed in the workplace.
This is where the organizational ability of an employee comes to play. This is not restricted just to an employee but also to the manager.
This is because, he/she is meant to set an example to the workers on what time management should be.
In the workplace, for you to manage time, you must be able to organize first yourself and secondly your activities.
This comes with proper planning of self-coordination and coordination of activities in the workplace, failure to do this will breed uncertainties in and around the completion of major jobs.
For the manager to effectively manage time may demand organizing the workers under him/her and specifying the job of the day, the time allotted to each job, and the best method to help achieve the desired results.
This is leadership on the part of the manager, which must be showcased to the employees.
Prioritization is the lining up of jobs according to their relevance and urgency.
All jobs are not given the same priority in the workplace. Jobs should be lined up and handled based on the time frame needed to complete each of them and expected time of delivery.
When this is put under consideration, it helps save a lot of time and ensure the completion of each job as at when due.
Part of the organizational skill needed to excel in the workplace is the ability to prioritize activities.
This is very important if time is to be managed in the workplace. Time frame should be allotted to every activity and more attention should be paid to activities and processes needed more for the growth of the organization.
Prioritization can take place in the form of time, complexity, or necessity. Prioritization in the form of time rates jobs based on time of expected completion or delivery.
Prioritization based on complexity rates job based on how complex the jobs are.
Prioritization can take the form of rating jobs based on how important they are.
Some jobs are more foundational than others, so preference is given to them more than others in the workplace.
3. Goal Setting
Goal setting goes a long way to help manage time well in every workplace. This gives you both short term and long term goal to be achieved.
This saves a lot of time and prevents mismanagement of time in carrying out activities that are not so relevant to the achievement of the goals of the business.
When short term goals are set, it helps in the organization and prioritization of jobs.
Setting goals helps in proper planning of events that take place in the workplace. In goal setting, steps, processes, and all factors are put under consideration to mix all and produce the desired result.
Goal setting also reduces wastage of not just time but other resources. Time is a resource that when combined well with other resources keeps the essence of the organization alive at all times.
Time management is a special skill whose importance cannot be overlooked.
Planning is important in managing time effectively. Failure to plan is a deliberate plan to fail.
The role of planning is vital to the growth of every business, no matter the scale of business. This is a key factor in business growth.
What is the role of planning in time management?
The role of planning in time management is simple: It saves time and determines the duration of every single task in the work place.
And with this, proper prioritization can be given to each task. Proper planning can help save valuable time.
Time management needs planning. In fact, in business proposals or business plans, timeframe for each step to be taken is always well stated.
This is because goals are time bound. If a goal is to be achieved, time must be given to each stage of job. Remember, time lost cannot be regained in anyway.
5. Effective Communication
Communication is also a key factor in managing time in the workplace and other engagements.
Communication is a way the employer can effectively transmit the vision of the organization to the employees.
Also, communication can be established in the workplace to help ease the stress of movement around the workplace which is one way time is wasted.
For example, a manager in the bank doesn’t need to leave his/her office just to call a staff; all he needs to do is put a call across and deliver the message and that can save valuable time.
Lack of effective communication in the workplace is a sure way of wasting or mismanaging time.
As earlier seen, based on the complexities of some business organizations, communication helps to pass information around without moving from the comfort of the office. Networks limited to the offices are established to help make this a reality.
In the workplace, communication can be horizontal or vertical. This is meant to be upward/downward movement of information to and fro the manager and the employees, as well as dissemination of information among people working in the same department.
Effective communication saves lots of time and the time saved can be used to achieve other goals.
Operating or working alone does not only stress you out but also wastes valuable time.
Imagine a scenario where one person does majority of the work in a team or at the workplace.
This can lead to burnout, reduction in the quality of the organization’s output, and finally wastage of valuable time.
Delegation allows for more hands to take up some responsibilities and deliver the right result at the stipulated time.
In organizations, jobs are delegated and shared among employees to help manage time effectively.
Also, organizations are well aware the customers or clients don’t like to be kept waiting in anyway.
The business world only reckons with businesses that apply speed in their daily activities.
So delegation is a necessity if time is to be well managed in the organization.
Failure to do this will result in sluggish movement of activities and this will definitely cripple the growth of the organization.
7. Stress Management
The ability to manage stress can be a deciding factor in the issue of time management. You might want to ask how.
And here is a short illustration to explain it:
An employee finishes his/her job for the day and is set to go home. Instead of going home to rest, he/she goes to a friend’s place to engage in another activity, only to return to his/her house late.
This employee that should have about 7-8 hours of rest ends up having just 3-4 hours.
The next day, he/she will go to his/her workplace and it will be evident that he/she did not have a proper rest.
This can show itself in the form of extreme fatigue even during early hours of the day, and in some cases dizziness may set in.
This tends to put pressure on the worker to meet up with his/her daily targets. Due to fatigue, he/she makes a lot of mistakes and delivers poor job.
Now, he/she has used more time to complete the job and also delivered a poor job.
So, you can see that lack of proactive stress management can cause mismanagement of time, and this can have a ripple effect on both individual and organizational output in the workplace.
The easiest way to manage time in the workplace is through teamwork. As the name suggests, teamwork involves different individuals contributing their best to achieving a common goal.
Goals set without consideration to teamwork is bound to turn into massive waste of time and resources.
The most important resource in every business venture is not money, neither is it anything else but people.
People in the workplace are the most valuable resource. However, having people is not to be mistaken to be a team. A team is more than number, but rather quality.
The quality of people joined together in a project or job goes a long way to determine how fast the goal of the business can be achieved.
Remember, this is jet age and everybody is on the move; time is a big factor. So to manage time in the workplace, you need to gather the best brains and most capable hands.
This will not only save time, but also help in achieving specified objectives.
Distraction is the opposite of focus. Focus is the ability to stay glued and consistent on a given job.
An employee that lacks focus is a potential time waster. Focus is one factor that helps keep you in check in your work and helps save time.
Inability to deal with distraction will always result to time mismanagement.
It is important to know that whatever activity or event that does not bring a person or organization closer to their goals and objectives is a distraction.
Distraction will always lead to poor quality of job and the mismanagement of time.
Ability to focus helps you fix your eyes and attention of achieving something necessary to the growth of the organization.
A man or woman who is always focused is mindful of time. This is because he/she understands the importance of time in all he/she does.
A man or woman with focus is a valuable asset to his/her organization and will use time judiciously.
Self-awareness in this context is you knowing what works for you and what doesn’t.
We all have different capacities and abilities. So, understanding what works for you and what doesn’t work for you is the beginning of time management.
It is important to know your abilities and work with it.
Though it is not a good idea not to be versatile in your abilities, however not using your area of strength will make you use a lot more time to achieve results on your job.
Using your method in your job if allowed is a sure way of managing time because you work with ease when you use your natural abilities then any untested method.
Whatever is short of your best ability cannot help you save or manage time.
You won’t be happy with your performance when you discover that your work was a product of many trials and errors. This can be demoralizing and time wasting.
11. Decision Making
Quick decision making skills will always help save your time.
Note that delay in decision making can put activities to a halt when work should be done.
Decision making is a special skill that can help you manage your time effectively.
None decision making or even delay in making decisions can be catastrophic and time wasting.
Every day we are faced with the issue of making sound or rational decisions in the workplace.
That is inevitable, so in scenarios like these, the ability to make decisions and doing so at record time is a skill needed in every workplace to help save valuable time for the organization.
Failure to take decisions on time can put pressure on you, on the business, and to an extent your fellow colleagues.
This can lead to wastage of valuable time of work and directly affect the general output of the organization.
12. Adaptation Skills
In the process of carrying out your job, one of the things prevalent is the issue of changes in some factors in the business.
The ability to adapt to the changes can go a long way to determine how much of time you can save in your job.
Adaptation is a skill every one that desires to stay top on the job needs to have.
Change is constant. It is something to look forward to. However, the biggest challenge is not the change itself but the ability and time taken to adapt to adverse changes.
Inability to adapt on time to changes is likely to lead to time wastage trying to adapt to a new challenge.
To curb this problem, organizations organize regular trainings for workers to help them adapt easily, especially when there are changes that may require time to adapt.
However, on the part of the individual, personal development can help prevent time wastage due to slow adaptation.
13. Little or No Procrastination
Procrastination is by far the worst enemy of time management. This is not a matter to be argued upon.
By explanation, procrastination puts away jobs meant for the moment for another time or day.
This is a pure waste of time and shows incompetence and irresponsibility in the workplace.
Dealing with procrastination is a sure way of managing time. It starts with the right attitude towards your job.
If you have the wrong attitude towards your job, one of the things that is bound to show up is procrastination.
And when a job is procrastinated, it cripples the personal and general input and output in the workplace.
To curb the problem of procrastination, you need to have a perfectionist attitude.
A perfectionist attitude is an attitude which is geared towards completion of your job and at the time stipulated.
If this attitude is absence, then it becomes impossible to manage time well in the working place.
One of the ways time is mismanaged in the workplace is lack of patience. How? Lack of patience makes a worker not to be relaxed in his/her job and this has some effects, which include lack of quality output, which emanates from lack of concentration, and plethora of mistakes.
When you are relaxed, you tend to concentrate more, focus more and avoid errors in the course of your job.
If these things are absent, a job can be repeated due to mistakes and that is a waste of time and resources.
Patience can help you to be calculative as to know how best to handle difficult situations.
Discipline saves time in the workplace and to stay disciplined in your job requires patience as mentioned above.
In every industry, the most influential names are the people who have the culture of being disciplined in whatever they do.
This is good way to save time in the workplace.
Remember that discipline can help you withstand negative circumstances just to achieve your goal.
If your time matters to you and you want to make the most out of it, then discipline is key.
Discipline is also important for you to focus. Focus is a product of discipline.
Lack of discipline is the reason many cannot handle distractions. With discipline, you save time because you cut down excesses that are not needed in your job both in the short and long run.
And when these excesses are cut down, the result is proper management of time which will definitely result to the accomplishment of the desired goal.
16. Managing Multiple Tasks
Though it is a good idea to be versatile, yet failure to manage multiple tasks can result to serious time mismanagement issues.
The truth is that if you want to stay top in your job, learn to set priorities when it comes to multiple tasks.
Understand that you can’t do everything at the same time.
Multiple tasks can be tricky because you can be involved in a lot of activities and yet not effective in majority of them, and what do we call that? Waste of time.
Do we discourage versatility? No, but it is important to know that it is better to be effective in one thing than to try to do many things and be non-effective in them.
To manage multiple tasks in order not to mismanage time, you need to set priorities and put activities in a pecking order or hierarchy of importance.
This can be achieved through good planning before going to the workplace. Self-awareness is very important in your quest to save time during multitasking. And finally, self-discipline can go a long way to help.
17. Record Keeping
This is a good way of managing time. Record keeping enables you keep record of previous events or activities that took place recently.
For an accountant, this a valuable tool to saving time, because a well-kept record can help save time when called upon for presentation of financial report of a business.
Record keeping also helps in knowing the legitimate account or amount of certain transaction done in a business or company.
For example when there is a miscalculation of some data or work, the records that were previously jotted down helps in serving as proof, in order to avoid certain downfall or bankruptcy.
Record keeping serving as data collection also helps in being able to extract, identify, and solve future or present errors that are made in records, allowing you to be able to know where, when, and how we are to improve our next strategies either in the improvement of finances or business plans.
This helps a lot in time management.
The ability to effectively manage your time will help you to achieve more and be efficient in what you do.
If you are looking to improve your time management practice, this page provides the skills and qualities you can develop.