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All posts in Time Management

Time Management PanicIn todays competitive environment we constantly hear people complaining about being “busy fools”. Generally people are running from one meeting to the next and although they are motivated by the meeting find it difficult at the end of the day to focus on what was discussed and action it.

So…In Time Management training we encourage delegates to use that momentum. Having just returned from a meeting with a list of new ideas use your motivation as soon as possible.

We provide 3 easy tips below to maximise your meeting;

1). Organise your notes and Prioritise

Decide which order you want to put your actions and ideas into practice- set deadlines for these actions.

2). Checklist

Compile a checklist for each of these actions and tick each action off when complete. There is a real “feel good factor” in doing this and it will help you to keep your momentum!

3). Other Tasks

When the minutes of your meeting are prioritized and you have a plan of action- now you can look at the correspondence and emails you missed while you were in the meeting. It is important to keep focused and not get too bogged down by what you have to do.

Although the above may sound simple and self explanatory it is amazing that so many people do not practice these techniques. In Time Management Training we teach various useful techniques that assist you in your everyday role. Far too many professionals stress about everything they have to do and waste time panicking about when to do it as opposed to being proactive and putting a list together that will help you reduce stress, save time in the long run and achieve more.

For more tips and techniques for Time Management see www.premiertraining.ie

 

 


Picture this, your 89 years of age, you realise that your life has been lived. Thinking back over it you wish you had bought that Mercedes, you wish you had been at your daughter’s birthday parties, you wish you had more family time or you wish you had simply said yes. Wouldn’t you love to find out how you could lessen these wishes into, I am happy I decided to. Believe it or not you can learn how to prioritise your time through time management training.

You may be the type of person that has accepted that you are willing to strike an unbalance in your time management as you are trying to gain that promotion and make your way to the top. However if you are not that person and you are aspiring to achieve the greatest happiness then you will need to learn how to develop and allocate your time to each aspect of your work or social life so that you do not look back on your life with a cloud full of I wishes.

Thankfully through time management training you can realise what there is still left to do before it becomes too late. Through trade offs and choices of what you will do with your time by way of prioritising you can say I am happy I decided to more often than not. The key to time management however is to always remember you can not get everything done. Therefore you do not need to be a perfectionist, this wastes time especially on something that only you will see.

You will see from time management training courses that you have not ended up in a situation by accident rather it was choices and actions carried out by you deliberately to gain that extra time needed to get done what is most important.

For example 3 ways to gain effective time management through fewer interruption you would:

  1. Physical. Turn your desk so that the oncoming traffic is away from your peripheral vision
    Have an uncomfortable chair in the office so people are less likely to stay longer.Check your watch, however only when you are talking
  2. Be assertive. Those that are people orientated can find it difficult to say no. This is a vital trait that they will have to learn which can be thought through assertiveness training courses.
  3. Send signals. If you are not comfortable closing your door use signals such as turning your name tag or putting on a cap, which you will indicate to all staff that this is the time in which you do not want to be disturbed, that way it will mutually support each other.

Through lack of balance in your life you will become stressed. You will then carry out the easiest tasks to relieve your stress this consequently leaving your higher prioritised task till last. By participating in time management training you can discover how to effectively balance your social and work life by finding out what you are willing to do in order to achieve your goals.

Tailored Time Management Training

If you want to learn more about how you can make a major difference in your life socially and professionally with time management training then please contact us for more details.


Wasp Sting TrainingI have been facilitating time management training courses for a number of years and time and time again I am asked, how do you facilitate meetings successfully? It appears that the old saying of ‘meetings are where minutes are taken and hours are wasted’ still holds true in many organisations.

Meetings are essential in most organisations and meetings can be highly productive if they are facilitated and managed correctly. However poorly facilitated meetings will definitely impact on your time management and the time management of others.

I would like to share with you the acronym that I developed for helping people to remember the key areas involved in effective meetings. I use this acronym in all of our time management training courses and also in many of our management training courses.

Such is the success of this acronym that many people who have attended our time management training have emailed me and said they have placed the acronym on the wall of the meeting room or notice board etc as a reminder.

I hope using the acronym will also help you, the acronym is WASP STING. I use this as it reminds me of a poorly facilitated meeting; the sting is painful, lasts for hours and often has bad side effects—no different than a poorly facilitated meeting.

So what is WASP STING training?

Who should attend the meeting, always remember the only members of a meeting are those who can seriously contribute to the meeting or have a very serious need to know what is happening due to the impact of them or others. Never be afraid to invite people who need to know for only the section they need to know about and then let them go.

Having people in a room that do not need to be there is a serious waste of resource and shows ineffective time management and facilitation of meetings skill

Agenda, this is a bare minimum and we probably all know we need an agenda, but do we send the agenda out in plenty of time and do we also ask people to see if any of the agenda items can be dealt with prior to the meeting, so as the meeting is only a sign off for that item, example of this would be previous minutes, monthly reports etc.

The biggest mistake people make with agendas is they fail to time the agenda items—each agenda item should have a start time and finish time.

Scribe, some one should be nominated to take the minutes. Effective minute taking is an art in itself, a good minute taker should be able to summarise the salient points of the meeting to the group at the end of the meeting so as to avoid any discrepancies

Purpose, why are you calling a meeting? is there any other way sharing the information or getting the decisions made? If you can not write down the purpose clearly in less than 4 lines think again.

Summarise, at the end of each agenda item you must summarise to ensure that everyone is aware of the decision or to ensure who does what by when etc

Tangents, we believe on our time management courses this is probably one of the most under rated killers of effective time management. How many meetings have you attended where the meeting goes off track for 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes etc

Some meetings never get back on track and even have to be revisited. The key to this is to nominate some one in the group to raise their hand if the meeting is going off on a tangent.

In our time management courses we name this role the ‘track Master” and the function is to keep the meeting on track—it is a role that very few facilitators delegate but a role that should be delegated at each meeting it save bundles of time

Inclusion, If you have chosen the right people to be at the meeting there is little point having them there unless they can add to the meeting or bring something to the table. To effectively facilitate a meeting you must include all.

Next, you need to summarise what are the next steps at the end of the meeting, what happens now? What are the action points that people have to do, remember a meeting with no action points is only a conversation 
Goals, I would have loved to have had this as one of the first part of the acronym but unfortunately this was the only place I could put it for WASP STING. Goals are vital for any meeting, what are you trying to achieve. If you don’t have clear goals at a meeting the meeting will not work. You need goals to keep focus and remember the goals should be SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time framed). As we say on our time management training course all that is left now is for you to take the sting out of your meetings and put the buzz back into them.

Time Management Training

If you would like any more information on the time management training and other training courses that are provided please do not hesitate to contact us.


John has asks you “do you have a minute?” you are up to your eyeballs but you can not say no, you’re a people pleaser. How can you prevent this interruption or cut that meeting shorter without insulting the other person? Well first thing for certain is to never say I have important business to attend to as they may feel that they therefore are not important. Through time management training courses you can discover the secret to getting rid of people efficiently yet gently and why you need to follow these 5 simple steps:

  1. Stand up
  2. Take a slow continuous stroll towards them
  3. Summarise the main points
  4. Compliment their work
  5. Break eye contact

I cannot recount the amount of times I got off the phone from a client stating that they kept me there too long, I told my colleague this and she suggested I record my end of the conversation only, so I could be sure that it was them, however I soon discovered it was actually me. I was the one wasting time that I did not have with a client that did not necessarily need my time. The question you need to ask yourself is, is it them or is it you? All too often it is you and you are externalising, for this reason it is important to participate in courses such as time management to discover what the problem factors are and how you can achieve a resolution.

Here we go again, Katie is late for the meeting for the third time in a row. However the key is that this time the door is locked, she wont get in. I hear you saying to yourself “well that just means she will be wasting our time later as we try to fill her in”, but that is not true as the meeting was tape recorded so Katie can listen to the part that she needs to hear. By taking part in a time management course, Katie can figure out her schedule and the company can pick up more ideas on efficient time planning.

Let he who does not procrastinate throw the first stone, exactly there will be no stones thrown here. We all do this at some point in our day, week or year leaving it hanging over us like a shadow of guilt. Well there are many undisclosed ways that you can overcome this which can be learned through time management courses such as the 5 minute plan or the journal technique. Wouldn’t you just love to know what these are to get that weight lifted?

Prioritising your time more efficiently either by phone, paperwork or in a meeting is an important factor in time management which can all be discovered through time management training. When we do this we can increase our flexibility at work and home, we can control interruptions, we can improve team relationships through mutual understanding and when you are needed by those you have prioritised you know that you have made the time and will be there for them.

Time Management Training

If you would like to learn more about how prioritising your time can make a major, positive difference to all aspects of your life then check out our time management training course.


So its nine o’clock, time to start work but before you can even see the computer there are yellow stickies, pink stickies, scraps of paper with scribbles and numbers and memos. This is when you start thinking to yourself I really should have attended that time management course. These are your to do lists yet where are you supposed to start? You have left work the evening before feeling guilty for not completing your tasks but how are you supposed to get these done with all the interruptions that you are faced with throughout the day. That time management course definitely may not have produced more time but it definitely would have helped me to manage my time effectively helping me to maintain a balance between my professional and social life.

We are not super human, we can not find the time to do everything. However what we can do is manage our time so that we can prioritise our tasks and activities in a manner of importance and urgency, this can allow us to do the doable. As stated above to do lists are messy and that’s actually ok as they are full of tasks that may get done and if they don’t that’s ok too as long as they are prioritised. Simply do not rewrite your to do list that’s just a waste of your time and poor time management.

Do you often find yourself saying oh yes I will do that mind-numbing, long, tiresome report as soon as.……well, this is a statement that should not have been coined as it prevents you from doing the task that is important, you will have to do it at some point so get stuck into it, you will then have great relief in crossing off your to do list.

When do you feel at your overall best during the day, morning, afternoon, lunchtime or your last hour? You need to become aware of this in order for you to manage your time and fulfil your maximum working potential in that time, if managed correctly you could complete up to 3 or 4 different tasks.

In today’s society we are interrupted on average every 6-9 minutes, by what you may ask, oh I don’t know, could it by any chance be by junk e-mails, texts, telephone calls, social networking sites or YouTube? After these controllable or uncontrollable interruptions it will take 4-5 minutes to obtain your concentration again. Is it therefore any wonder that we moan about our time management and are left aggravated and feeling as though we have achieved very little through the working day?

Consequently we could all use a little extra time and you can find out how to gain this through effective time management courses which will be valuable to you in your professional work and social life.


We can do nothing to increase time and we must always remember that time is one of the few things in modern life that is not recyclable. However time management training and getting good at time management skills can provide you with the feeling of achieving a certain amount of work at the end of each day, as opposed to going home from work and feeling although you have worked long hours you have achieved nothing during the day.

Good time management skills is about many things, prioritising, managing interruptions, avoiding procrastination etc. But time management really starts with having a plan of action which clearly states the tasks you are hoping to complete on any given day—other wise known as a to do list.

I am not a fan per se of to do lists however I do believe you need an action list outlining the actions you are going to take to achieve your tasks on a daily basis. Time management training will always speak of the importance of planning your work and working your plan.

I have set out below some key points for getting into the habit of writing a list and managing the list.

Before writing a list as part of your time management skills, you should always check your diary for that day, as if you use effective diary control to make appointments with yourself for the tasks you need to carry out, there will always be daily entries in the diary.

Remember the 80/20 principle 80% of things on your time management list will produce 20% of the results and 20% of the list will produce 80% of the results. A key element of time management training is to always remember this rule and work on the key areas that produce the important results.

Get yourself in to the habit of writing a time management list every day, try to write the list at the same time daily so as it forms a habit. Some will do the time management list first thing in the morning whilst others will use time management skills to prepare the list the night before, just before you leave work—leaving it on your desk for as soon as you arrive the following morning.

Time management training courses will tell you that the important thing is to get into the habit of writing a list each day on one piece of paper (not a thousand yellow stickies all over your pc) The list should take no more than 10 minutes maximum to compile. Time management is not about having loads of things on your list, it is about having the most important things on your list. Time management training will teach you it is not the amount of items on the list but the importance of the items.

You must allow time for emergency changes in your daily schedule. No matter how effective you are at training yourself in the skills of time management, there will always be the possibility of unscheduled important tasks popping up or interruptions etc.

Be realistic with your time management lists and try your best to allocate each task a start time and finish time. Group similar tasks together for momentum and remember to carry forward items from one day to the other (only if they are important and must be actioned.)

Even think of rewarding yourself after each task has been done and crossed off the time management list. Remember the key saying in effective time management training:

Is what I am doing now helping me to achieve my objective?


Through both management training courses and time management training courses one of the key areas managers must learn is the effective art of delegation.

Time management training courses teach us the importance of managing time through gaining more minutes or hours in your working day by becoming good at delegating. Whereas management training courses teach us the skills of delegating in order to develop staff.

Whatever the reason or delegating, whether it be to gain more control of your working day and manage your time better or whether it is to effectively manage your team the skills needed are the same.

Delegation does not mean doing nothing yourself and abdicating work, but it does mean managing time more effectively and managing your staff. On time management training courses you often hear Manager say ‘I haven’t got time to delegate, or I am the only one that can do the task, or I don’t really have anyone with the skills.

The truth is generally that they have not sat back and looked at how they could delegate.

Those who are successful at delegating and improve their time management skills are those that ask themselves the following questions:

Is there someone who can do any of the above tasks better than me?

Is there someone with training that I can develop to carry out the task?

Is there some one who may do it different from me and maybe not quite as good but still acceptable?

Other things to discover is not only your own time management but the cost of the task, in other words if there is some one paid less than you, who can carry out the task then it makes management sense to allow them to carry out the task.

The key steps to time management through delegation are as follows:

Identify the task to delegate:Generally delegate the whole task if possible

Flag the idea to the individual: Choose some one who is willing and able.

Sell the task: You may need to sell the benefits to the individual to carrying out the task in terms of their own development.

Organise and control the task: Ensure the task is organised and you have also agreed feedback times and meetings to ensure the task has been carried out.

Management training courses will always teach you the control is vital, ‘what gets checked gets done’ but the real beauty of learning to delegate effectively is the additional time management skill you will have in your management armour to increase your own time and manage time effectively.


If we think the last few years have been difficult in terms of time management and using our time management skills to try to create more time and reduce stress levels— we haven’t seen nothing yet!

Time management training will be a vital component of everyone’s personal development over the next number of years. For the past few years (in the good times) we have all had bosses, family members, subordinates, colleagues and friends competing for our time.

But just think back, for those of you old enough to remember the last recession, when words like downsizing or rightsizing were at the forefront of every newspaper. The lucky ones kept their jobs and the not so lucky lost their jobs.

Well the reality was that those that kept their jobs may not have been so lucky for as well as keeping their own jobs they also had to inherit the jobs of colleagues who were made redundant. More work, longer hours, more responsibility but yet no additional time.

Those who had been on time management courses and learned the time management skills of prioritising, delegating, dealing with interruptions and so on, were obviously better positioned to manage new tasks, but those without the adequate time management training were those who found it more difficult, and often felt under pressure.

Now let’s look at the picture today, already we believe there are not enough hours in the day to effectively manage our time so as we can achieve what we need to and want to. What is going to happen over the next few years when you are one of the lucky ones who has kept their job, but has to cover for those who have lost their jobs — will you really be the lucky one, having to work longer hours take on more tasks and probably see less and less of the family that are important to you?

Well the reality is we need to be given the skills to manage time effectively over the next number of years we need to be trained in time management skills and effective organisational skills, we need to learn how to delegate effectively, how to prioritise our tasks, how to know the difference between important and urgent. If not we will not be the lucky ones for keeping our jobs but the unlucky ones.

Time Management Training

Now more than ever we need to have effective time management training and attend effective time management training courses to learn the necessary skills to survive the next few years, just in case we are the lucky ones.


On a recent time management course the trainer said the following: Picture this, your 89 years of age, you realise that your life has been lived. Thinking back over it you wish you had bought that Mercedes, you wish you had been at your daughter’s birthday parties, you wish you had more family time or you wish you had simply said yes. Wouldn’t you love to find out how you could lessen these wishes into, I am happy I decided to………………….Believe it or not you can learn how to prioritise your time through time management training courses.

You may be the type of person that has accepted that you are willing to strike an unbalance in your time management as you are trying to gain that promotion and make your way to the top. However if you are not that person and you are aspiring to achieve the greatest happiness then you will need to learn how to develop and allocate your time to each aspect of your work or social life so that you do not look back on your life with a cloud full of I wishes.

Thankfully through time management training courses you can realise what there is still left to do before it becomes too late. Through trade offs and choices of what you will do with your time by way of prioritising you can say I am happy I decided to more often than not.

The key to time management however is to always remember you can not get everything done. Therefore you do not need to be a perfectionist; this wastes time especially on something that only you will see.

You will see from time management training courses that you have not ended up in a situation by accident rather it was choices and actions carried out by you deliberately to gain that extra time needed to get done what is most important.

For example 3 ways to gain effective time management through fewer interruptions you would:

  1. Physical. Turn your desk so that the oncoming traffic is away from your peripheral vision.Have an uncomfortable chair in the office so people are less likely to stay longer.Check your watch, however only when you are talking.
  2. Be assertive. Those that are people orientated can find it difficult to say no. This is a vital trait that they will have to learn which can be thought through assertiveness training courses.
  3. Send signals. If you are not comfortable closing your door use signals such as turning your name tag or putting on a cap, which you will indicate to all staff that this is the time in which you do not want to be disturbed, that way it will mutually support each other.

Through lack of balance in your life you will become stressed. You will then carry out the easiest tasks to relieve your stress this consequently leaving your higher prioritised task till last.

By participating in time management courses you can discover how to effectively balance your social and work life by finding out what you are willing to do in order to achieve your goals.