- Create a daily plan. Take the first 30 minutes of every day to plan your day. Don’t start your day until you complete your time plan. The most important time of your day is the time you schedule to schedule time.
- Prioritize your tasks. Time-consuming but relatively unimportant tasks can consume a lot of your day. Prioritizing tasks will ensure that you spend your time and energy on tasks that are truly important to you.
- Set a time limit to each task. Be clear that you need to finish X task by 11 AM, Y task by 2 PM, and Z item by 4:30 PM. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.
- Use a calendar. Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.
- Learn to say “No”. Consider your goals and schedule before agreeing to take on additional work. Practice not answering the phone just because it’s ringing and e-mails just because they show up. Disconnect instant messaging. Don’t instantly give people your attention unless it’s absolutely crucial in your business to offer an immediate human response. Instead, schedule a time to answer email and return phone calls.
- Break time-consuming tasks into smaller tasks. Work on them a few minutes at a time until you get them all done.
- Evaluate how you’re spending your time. Track your time on everything you do to determine how you’re spending your time. You’ll see how much time is actually spent producing results and how much time is wasted on unproductive thoughts, conversations and actions.
- Limit distractions. Block out time on your calendar for big projects. During that time, close your door and turn off your phone, pager and email.
- Get plenty of sleep, eat a healthy and exercise regularly. A healthy lifestyle can improve your focus and concentration, which will help improve your efficiency so that you can complete your work in less time.
- Take a time management course. If your employer offers continuing education, take a time management class. If your workplace doesn’t have one, find out if a local community college, university or community education program does.
Overall, there are two steps to get things done – 1. Decide what to do 2. Do it!