Effective Time Management is More Important than Ever

effective time managementEffective time management is becoming an increasingly important skill in the business world today. We know that time is a finite commodity and there is an ever- growing demand for it. So, you must choose how you use your time wisely. This is not a new idea. However, the reason that time management can take on a new sense of importance, is that many in the workforce are juggling family responsibilities along with their work responsibilities.  Business professionals know that they need to include time for networking as well.

Many professionals have obligations with child care, elder care, or both. These responsibilities require chunks of time. Often this cuts into their ability to network.

If you are looking to expand your business and build a career, then this is one activity that you cannot ignore. You need to make time to network. Individuals are more effective as leaders when they have deeper and broader business connections. Yet, if you have family responsibilities, time for business activities will be limited. Often the first additional business activity to be eliminated or lessened is networking. Yet, networking provides the social capital for your professional growth.

If you are looking to expand your business and build a career, then there is one activity that you cannot ignore.  You need to make time to network.  Individuals are more effective as leaders when they have deeper and broader business connections.  Yet, if you have family responsibilities, time for business activities will be limited.  Often the first additional business activity to be eliminated or lessened is networking.  Yet, networking provides the social capital for your professional growth.

To carve out time to include networking activities, incorporate these effective time management techniques into your business practice.

Own your own time.

As much as possible, try to work on projects that you initiate, so that you can dictate when and how you spend your time.  It is certainly reasonable to consider flexible schedules if you are handling family responsibilities.  Maintain a relentless focus on self-directed goals that you can achieve.

Stay focused.

You can’t be productive without mastering the art of attention management.  Being busy is not being productive.  It’s going through the motions with a lack of focus.  To stay focused, eliminate distractions such as email alerts, and open project files sitting on your desk.  Keep things simple by only having on your desk the work you are currently handling.

End indecisiveness.

Being decisive has a great advantage with time management.  Worrying about choices and decisions is a huge time waster.  Some decisions take research and contemplation, but save those for the major decisions, not the decisions you make daily.  Having a process for making decisions and establishing your priorities can be simplified by using our GET THINGS DONE THAT MATTER workbook.  We have found that when goals are set and to-do lists are developed, decisions become easier to make.

Do things today that make more time tomorrow.

You can never be certain what is going to hit your desk each day.  Procrastination is your worst enemy.  Tasks will continue to pile up if you don’t get things done as they come across the desk.  Having available time for clients’ new concerns will be possible only if you keep getting things done when they arrive.  Prolonging project completions also adds stress because it stays present.  By getting things done as soon as possible, while still producing quality work, you will find that you are making more time when you thought there was none.

Networking does not have to be after-hours.

Set your work schedule, using effective time management, so that you can not only get your business projects done, but that you have time to network through emails. video conferencing, and/or meeting for coffee.

As a business professional, you will find that being more connected with other colleagues will provide fresh ideas, growth opportunities, and the ability to assist others.  Having family responsibilities is part of work/life balance.  However, allowing time to network and build business connections cannot be overlooked if you need and want your business to grow.  Use your time wisely and efficiently so that there is time for networking and boosting your professional development.

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Dr. Ann Gatty is president of Strategic People Solutions, a business consulting firm, helping businesses add value-assets to their businesses. For the past twenty years she and her husband, Gene, have been providing leadership development programs, business implementation strategies, and solving HR employment issues. Ann has recently created The Business Sphere of Excellence® a strategic business planning model used to construct annual and long range business plans helping businesses run more efficiently and profitably. Dr. Ann Gatty is an expert in understanding and improving the workplace culture which is fundamental for implementing any successful strategic initiatives. In order to better explain the importance of employee engagement, Ann partners with Beretta, her Great Dane therapy dog to present her key findings.
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