Time Management Techniques
Top Time Management Techniques
Time is precious. More than money itself. We cannot make more of it, and what we have is limited. So we thought we would spend the time to put together some of the best techniques available. Hopefully this post helps you save some time and increases your productivity.
The Pareto Principle
Vilfredo Pareto, an Italian economist, created the 80/20 rule. It is the belief that 20% of actions can lead to 80% of results. Pareto analysis helps you to prioritise tasks that will solve the most problems.
How it works
Make a list of all the problems that you face. Perhaps your grades are falling.
Find the root cause of each problem. Perhaps your grades are falling because you spend too much on social media.
Each problem is assigned a score: Higher numbers are associated with more serious problems.
Problems grouped together by cause: All the problems that are caused by too much time spent on social media can be gathered together.
Add the scores of each group. The issue that has the highest score is the one you should focus on.
Time management starts with setting goals and knowing where you want to go. SMART goals is a popular method for setting goals.
Since 1981, the paper “There’s an S.M.A.R.T.” published this technique. George T. Doran published “How to Write Management’s Goals & Objectives”.
It is very simple. Each SMART-based written goal should be written according to the following criteria:
- Specific, clearly defined outcomes you desire to achieve.
- Measurable – There must be a way to measure progress
- Achievable- It is possible to achieve the goal with the resources available
- Relevant – It must be relevant to a larger picture. You must also know why you want something.
- Time-bound – A clear deadline to reach the goal
People don’t have goals. Around 10% of people have never written goals. It takes time and effort to set meaningful goals.
If you do decide to write down your goals you should not write vague resolutions that don’t give you direction or proper motivation. It would be a waste of time. It is important to clearly define your goals.
There are many resources online that provide detailed information, examples, and templates for setting SMART goals.
The Eisenhower Matrix
It is essential to know how to prioritise your work. Everything is a priority.
There are many tasks that can be done. The Eisenhower Matrix, also known as the Urgent-Important Matrix, helps you identify your most important tasks. You can easily see which tasks you should be working on by categorising your work.
You can divide tasks into four quadrants
- Urgent and Important
- Not-Urgent, Important
- Both urgent and not-important
- Not-Urgent or Important
The Pomodoro Technique
This technique is ideal for people who are easily distracted and have trouble staying focused on their tasks. Francesco Cirillo developed the Pomodoro Technique in the 1980s as a time management technique.
What you will need:
- Your list of to-dos
- App Timer and Pomodoro
How it works
You’re familiar with the feeling: you want to make significant progress on a project but keep getting lost.
For a while, you stare at the blinking cursor before giving up and moving over to YouTube. Finally, you manage to write a few words before refilling your water. It’s frustrating to be constantly interrupted and it’s hindering your ability get meaningful work done.
The Pomodoro Technique is a great tool to help you focus. It breaks down your workday into smaller chunks that make it easier for you to manage.
This technique is great for people who spend a lot of their time jumping between seemingly unrelated tasks.
What you will need:
- Your list of to-dos
Do you boast about your ability to multitask? Research shows that it is almost impossible for the brain to perform multiple cognitively demanding tasks at once. You’re really switching quickly between tasks.
Frequent shifting of gears can cause more harm than you think. This is especially true when you consider the time it takes to refocus after being distracted.
Task batching is a great option if you are someone who likes to jump around on your to-do lists without any structure or order. It’s simple. You want to group similar tasks together so you can complete them all in one go.
Write down the tasks you need to complete for the day. Next, take a look at what items are on your list. You might have emails to respond to, graphics to create, or files to update.
Take out your various colored highlighters and pick one for a similar task. Perhaps all the emails will be written in yellow, but the graphics will be in blue. Next, organise your tasks according to these categories. You can then answer all the emails one-by-one before you move on to creating all graphics.
This can be a bit counterintuitive if you are used to dealing with items based on their urgency and how much energy they will require. This will save you time and headaches.
Eat The Frog
You can’t eat every frog and tadpole in the pond. You can eat the largest and most ugly one. That will suffice for now. This is your frog. This is the task that has the greatest impact on your work.
Start your day with this frog. You can be disciplined to get started on your most important task.
This simple time management strategy will bring you a win in your day. This builds momentum and gives you a sense of accomplishment. This is how you can achieve large goals: small, continuous effort every day.
Keep this in mind:
Do not succumb to the urge to tackle the most difficult tasks first. Begin your day with your frog.
Additional Quick Tips
- You can plan your day ahead
- Limit your e-mail consumption
- Find your productivity zone
- Eat the frog – Take on the largest task first
- Regular breaks are a must
- Delegate by saying “no”
- Block distractions and focus
- Stop multitasking
- Time is your most precious resource.
- Make a morning routine