We hear and read the statement all the time, “time is more important than wealth” Most top leaders and speakers have something to say about the subject of time management in their biographies and self-help books. They all deliver the key message that time is the most important resource available to us and that when we are able to manage our time; we are well on the road to enjoying the success we all deserve.
Below are what I consider to be the top two proven techniques a manager or business owner can take in order to start to take control of their time.
Proven Time Management Technique Number 1 – Plan
Begin with the end in mind is a popular phrase and it represents a very important principal. The less time you think you have, the more critical it is for you to plan. By planning carefully, you’ll be able to manage your time better and avoid costly mistakes that eat up even more of your time.
Can you imagine an archery competition where there are no targets? How would the archer know if he or she hit anything, or even came close? Too often we treat our lives and our businesses as though the target is unimportant.
You might say that you’re so busy you don’t even have time to plan. That’s usually a sign that you need to take time to plan more than anyone else. The payoff is the ability to see your entire project holistically and see efficiencies in tasks and perhaps areas where you can hire out.
Your plan is like a road map. Spend enough time to ponder through the different approaches and activities, and you will soon realize that you can save a lot more time by doing this. Make sure you are going towards the right goal and check your plan from time to time to make sure you haven’t driven off the road.
Find a quiet to so that you can fully focus on the planning process. Every individual has a unique perception of a well-made plan. There are no specific rules in making it. Here are some tips which you can apply to your own system.
1. Write down your objective. This is a precise definition of your target.
2. Brainstorm the strategies & tactics you will employ to accomplish your objective.
3. Take the time to fully consider the advantages & disadvantages of implementing the strategies & tactics you have identified and give yourself the best chance of success by choosing those tactics where the pros outweigh the cons.
4. Always set a deadline for achievement of your targets.
5. Make modifications & back-up plans in case Plan A doesn’t work.
6. Learn from the evolution of your plan. It’s from this experience, and comparison to your original plan, that you will gain skills and talent.
The most important time management tip of all is to take action immediately. If your time is that important, then don’t waste it by sitting around or over planning. Determine your first steps and make a start. Remember they say that during a long haul flight, the aircraft is off track on average 80% of the time, the pilot or autopilot is constantly making corrections to get the plane to the correct destination. You can also corrections as you move towards your target.
Proven Time Management Technique Number 2 – Delegate routine tasks to others.
Once you have identified your targets, you can then start allocating tasks to other people in order to allow you the time to concentrate on the tasks that need your undivided attention.
If you have a home business, consider hiring a temp or working with a Virtual Assistant (VA) to deal with book entry. Most people don’t need a full time employee and the time you save allows you to focus on building your vision. If you are able, hire people to clean the house, cut the grass, and even some of your other office jobs. Let others do the research. But of course, you have to reward them accordingly so they will be motivated to render their services again. There are also web sites dedicated to connecting you with the talent you need to complete projects. Use their skills to fulfil your dreams.
Till Next Time
Mike Gardner – The Time Doctor