Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
For any professional, correctly managing time is essential as from it comes, in almost all security, efficiency in all the tasks performed. For an executive even more so, as in executive positions, the pressure of the surroundings is high and tends to cause distortion in personal organization which, when frequent, causes a reduction in performance, a fatalist resignation, and undesired stress.
As opposed to what is commonly thought, time management is not a natural skill that some people have and others don’t. We aren’t born with the ability to organize ourselves; it is learnt and thanks to it, significant improvements in performance are achieved in all tasks carried out. Nonetheless, we admit that some people possess a sense of order, a natural inclination that usually is shown at an early age.
On the other hand, we must remember that time is a resource with three characteristics that make it unique:
- It is available to anyone. Most resources have a “property”: money to invest, books to study, instruments of any type, etc. Time doesn’t; we all can have time.
- Everyone has the same quantity of time. An hour, a day, a month… are exactly the same for everyone.
- It is inevitably used. Whether we like it or not, in any task time will come into play, unlike other resources where their use is usually optional.
As a result, managing time is no different to that of any other resources we have available.To do it correctly, you just need to combine good task management with the right management of the independence with which we can perform the task. And those are the skills in which in many cases can be improved with learning and training.
Nothing better than to have a line-up of practical, short and concise advice, that when handled properly and subject to a strict discipline should result in the disappearance of the eternal “time problem”, captured in endless work hours, to-ing and fro-ing from work to home, “it’s Friday again”, etc. For executives, the need is two-fold. You are responsible for your own time and for others’.
Tips for correctly managing time
- Stop interruptions, that come suddenly, without notice, or by rebound. Be a little selfish.
- Know your priorities. Know how to ask for them and do not take on tasks unless you have done it beforehand. Working blindly without priorities can generate subsequent errors and dissatisfaction.
- Be FIFO (first in first out). Don’t accumulate old tasks. Finish them off in order. Only change this natural order with the appearance of emergencies and, in some cases, with the change in the established priorities.
- Don’t be overconfident. Know your own limits and don’t exceed them. Doing it, generates barren exhaustion and detachment if it is directed at others.
- Handle five things at most at one time or homogenous time period.
- Don’t be a perfectionist. The best is usually the enemy of the reasonably good. From the point where the marginal benefit is zero, time becomes gold. Not before that.
- Know how to waste time every now and again. Releasing tension, resting, relaxing are activities that also have a place in our time resource.
- Be an owl. Watch, process, decide and act. If possible, without hesitation.
Juan Ignacio Barenys de Lacha is Director at Odati and Eskpe Consulting. Member of AEDIPE, creator of the Odati Method for training executives and managers, ex-CEO of Olivetti Information Systems Spain and of Sligos Systems and chairman of the World Forum Congress in Washington in 1990.
At Zyncro, we care about correctly managing time and we believe that an Enterprise Social Network can help you and your team to improve productivity. If you still haven’t tried Zyncro, try it free now and be convinced. If you don’t believe us, you can download the whitepaper in which we give you practical case studies of companies that have 😉