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Time Management Tools and Resources

Mar

13

Time Management Tools and Resources

Time Management Tools and Resources

In order to know how to better manage your time you must first know how you are spending your time. So, the first thing you will want to do is set aside a few days and log how your time is being spent. First write down the task you are performing, and how long it takes for completion. Try to be as specific and detailed as possible. Once you have done this it should be easier to see what takes up the most time, what takes up too much time, and what should be given more time.

Keeping Track

Writing everything down by hand will most certainly be inconvenient and will require that you carry that paperwork around with you. Lucky for you its 2013 and all of this can be tracked on a tablet, smart phone, or computer using one of many apps/programs. Some of these apps (for instance, aTimeLogger) can be used as a standalone product that focuses mainly on logging your time. Others (Google Calenders) you can sync with your email and work calendar and provide an overall view along with the benefits of tracking your time/logging your time. Choosing the one that fits your needs best is up to you, but for recommendations check here and here. The second link is great, it provides a breakdown of some of the top apps and what they are best for specifically.

Streamlining and Simplifying

Once you have broken your day down, you are ready to stream line it. You can use one of the apps from the link above, like todoist, or you can set up a paper schedule like the one found here from the folks at businessballs.com. While the high-tech apps are great for when you are on the go, having a template at your desk that you can use as a foundation for your day will help you stay consistent with your schedule. A more simplified schedule/foundation will make it easier for you to find time for urgent matters that pop up throughout the day.

Urgent and Important Tasks

There will always be tasks that fall outside of your daily to-do list. These will probably be super important tasks the needed to be done 5 minutes ago, or popped up out of the blue and are causing a panic. Regardless, they will need to be addressed and will take time out of your already packed schedule. A great tool to organize and prioritize these items is an Urgent/Important matrix. The concept and execution of this tool is best explained here. Essentially you have a matrix that allows you to put all tasks (important/urgent, distractions/low importance) down on to a sheet so you can easily organize and attack them. This tool could also be useful across a team of employees you are delegating tasks to showing them an order of importance.

This overall process will not happen overnight, and it will not come without some getting used to. However, once you start the process and get a hold of the reins these tools can really help you to free up more time in your day, and help you become a more efficient and productive employee.



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