This Matrix is a simple way of helping yourself to choose which activities, tasks or projects to prioritize if you wish to make the most of your time and opportunities. You can also “see’ clearly which ones you will need to drop. After all, you are the “manager of your time” and you can incorporate the tool to choose activities intelligently. The alternative is involving you in activities that could be low-yield and very time consuming.
For all of us that have spent money and time on Time Management techniques, articles, blogs, webinars… the list is endless, I have this epiphany to share with you: Time management is a myth. Given that the day having only 24 hours, we can only manage ourselves within the timeframe given.
Experimenting with different tactics to find the best way to maximize the use of time brings to mind Dwight David “Ike” Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States. Ike based his oval office decisions on the following: “What is important is seldom urgent, and what is urgent is seldom important.” He could not have been more right.
Let’s take a closer look at this concept, the Eisenhower Matrix. This method was made popular by Stephen Covey in his book “First Things First.” With the limitations on available time, the path to perfection is prioritization. When confronted with the scores of tasks to be done each day, two questions separate the items on the to-do list: First, is the task important? Second, is it urgent?
According to OfficeTime’s most recent survey, 47% named e-mail as the biggest time killer. As a matter of fact, of those polled by OfficeTime, 40% admitted they spend an average of 1-3 hours a day dealing with email.
Is Multitasking the Enemy of Productivity & What does it do to Time Management?It will come as a surprise to most of us to find out that only 2 percent of the work force can multitask effectively. If that is true, then 98 percent of us, who try to multitask almost every moment of every day, actually impair our productivity rather than help it – and what does that do to our time management???.
Step 1. Summarize all tasks that compose your weekly to-do list. This will give you the ability to prioritize according to deadlines and importance. Then split your workload into chunks of time. Write the central idea for the specific day. Can you now specify a few main branches for the key tasks that you need to accomplish? Give those a title and arrange them as sub categories of the central idea. Under these sub categories list all the events, tasks, sub-tasks, deadlines, actions, etc. that are needed to complete each of the sub categories individually.
Step 2. Prioritize. You now have an educated view to decide what is important and what is not, objectively. Having clarity about how everything fits together will increase your productivity. You will be able to “find” those extra hours on your weekly schedule. If you created your summary correctly, you will be organized, calm and clear to tackle the main category of each day.
Time Management Tip: Be smart in how you communicate. I’m not saying to be unfriendly at all, but I try not to create open ended “chatty” conversations by email (or even in life). Getting sucked into a 20-minute “How’s it going” can mean 20 minutes less with my little girl at the end of the day. So, limit your use of questions when you’re short on time. Instead of “How are you this morning,” try the equally friendly comment: “It is so nice to see you today!” This will stop email back and forth in its tracks.
Ahhh the morning routine. Mornings are critically important to setting the tone for the rest of your day. As we all know, they can also be incredibly chaotic. From the moment your alarm clock goes off until you sit down at your desk, there are precious minutes being wasted here and there. Between taking the…
#1. Don’t Schedule Back-to-Back Appointments. Besides making your life unnecessarily difficult, just getting from place to place, this habit also totally squelches creativity because you’re mentally probably already worrying about the next place you need to be, instead of focusing on where you are. Leave a healthy gap between events so you can breath, power…
For many people, the word “fun” is not what comes to mind when they think of time management. Instead they think of it as just another important part of business. But who says you can’t make it fun? We have come up with a great way to track and manage your time that incorporates many key concepts – and uses the best time tracker out there to make it easy: OfficeTime.