Time Management: Article on Managing Energy Not Time

Woman Juggling ClocksThis article, “Manage Energy, Not Time”, was written by Tom Chi, an expert in IT development, discusses the importance of managing energy and doing certain types of tasks at people’s operating and energetic peak. This article provides three questions for managers and leaders to pose before delegating important projects.

Time Management: Are You Late for Meetings: Try Procrastinator’s Clock

A clock that can be installed on your computer and displays the time up to 15 minutes early, you just don’t know. Good for those individuals who just can’t seem to be on time for meetings and appointments. The procrastinator’s clock shows time early to help those individuals be triggered to leave for meetings and appointments and hopefully arrive on time or maybe not as late.

Here are the options for Procrastinator’s Clock

  • clock on deskProcrastinator’s Clock: Free download from CNET
  • iGoogle: Google has their own procrastinator’s clock that you can add to your Google homepage.
  • Dave Seah designed a procrastinator’s clock that just opens in your browser if you prefer not to download any app.

The Six Steps to Planning Your Week: Free Online Training

Officiency is in progress to launch their online time management training series. You can now view one of the first courses, The Six Steps to Planning Your Week  free!

This course on planning your week will review how to plan for your upcoming week’s tasks and activities. You will learn the six areas to review when planning and how to effectively approach each area.  There is a variety of time management resources available including an article on Selecting a Task List System.

Click here for more information on Officiency online trainings. If you would like to schedule an in-person training on Time and Email Efficiency, contact us!

Time Management: Recommended Apps

The following are some time management apps that can help workers manage, track and prioritize their time.

Prioritize: Priority Matrix centers on clock on deskproject lists. Once a project is set up then associated tasks are affiliated with the projects. The difference with this app is that you then must categorize each task into one of four quadrants based on Stephen Covey’s, author of Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, “urgent vs. important” model. The default quadrants are: critical and immediate, critical but not immediate, not critical but immediate, and not critical and not immediate. Priority Matrix provides this prioritizing structure that certain users might find useful to help them focus on the important vs. urgent task items.

Time Tracking: Harvest is a time tracking app that helps users determine how they are spending their time during the workday. It can track individual tasks, client billing or projects. If you use Harvest to track billable hours it has the ability to export a category of hours QuickBooks. It also has the ability to do reports and provide analysis of how and where users spend their time.

Task Integration to Calendar and Contacts: SmartTime integrates users daily tasks with their calendar and/or contacts on their iPhone. It also has the ability to email tasks with other SmartTime users.

Event Tracking: Last Time is an event tracking app that helps users remember the last time they did something. For example, when the last vacation was and what activities you did, or the last time you took your car in for maintenance or a tune-up. This app essentially acts as a recorder of events that you may need to recall in the future.

 Reaching Goals: Stickk is a platform designed for individuals to make a “commitment contract” with themselves to help achieve personal or professional goals such as exercising more, attaining a higher education or being a better email manager. This application was developed by a Yale University economist who developed the model through extensive field research on commitments and motivation.

 

Time Management: Working in the Right Environment for the Right Activity—The Document Development Zone

Most of us perform our daily tasks at our desk near the computer. Often this is not the best place to do certain activities or priority tasks that take more concentration and less distraction. Activities such as strategic thinking, reading, writing and development often require a different environment to assist in changing the mindset to help perform those tasks more quickly and efficiently. An advantage of technology tools, telework and remote work environments is that workers can now utilize the right environment for the right activity.

Here is one type of zone environment each worker should have ;

Document Development zone

In our knowledge-based economy most workers have reports, budgets and written deliverables that are required for the job. These written deliverables require concentrated thinking, as do reading and decision making, but they also require workers to be near their computers. Often workers get started on these written deliverables and become waylaid from the task because e-mail and communication activities are immediately reactive.

A recent Vanderbilt University study found that a person who writes a report while checking e-mail will take one-and-half times longer than if the tasks were done sequentially. To be more efficient in written tasks consider taking the computer to another location such as a coffee shop, quiet room, conference room or home. If that isn’t an option then log out of e-mail and database programs and set the phone to voicemail to limit the immediate reactive temptation. Creating this development zone will maximize time and improve quality of work.