Better and effective Time management

Thus, for better and effective time management the following suggestions can be attempted in the daily work.

1) Develop self discipline
2) Avoid perfectionism
3) Plan to minimize idle time
4) Improve efficiency of time utilization
5) Improve your method of handing visitors
6) Avoid the will-do-it-tomorrow attitude.
7) Develop loyalty towards your own decisions.

Misconceptions about time management:

Most managers do not understand the concept of time management in the proper sense, though most of them claim to be practicing it. There are certain myths or misconceptions about time management. A few of those are:

1) The harder one works, the more he gets something done: This is known as the myth of activity. It has generally been found that managers spend or waste most of their time on routine and trivial matters. This leaves them too busy to attend to their own job. They could easily have delegated the less important jobs to subordinates.
2) Higher level management makes better decisions: No, it is not always true. Lower level people can also make good decisions. On the other hand, all the decisions taken by the top level are not always fruitful.
3) Delay in decision making improves its quality: Further delay seldom improves the quality of decision. If all the information has been gathered and analyzed, it is better to go ahead with the decision making.
4) Time can be saved: No, time cannot be saved. Time can be utilized in an efficient way be getting more out of the available time.
5) Reducing the time on activities means better time management: This is also a myth. Time should be allotted to the various activities on priority basis.
6) It is best to do everything yourself: Doing all the work your self does not mean better time management. In this way you will end up doing all the less important work and leaving the important tasks unattended.
7) Most of the day’s activities do not need planning: Planning the day’s activities in advance gives a clear picture of what must be done. Good planners make a provision for unforeseen interruptions.

After seeing the myths or misconceptions about time management, we proceed to the next area of our discussion that is the time wasters and the steps to avoid them.

Time Wasters:

The activities or happenings which hamper the completion of the work:

Avoiding Time Wasters:

If we take a close look at time wasters it will be found that they can be broadly categorized into two external time wasters and internal time wasters. External time wasters are often beyond one’s control as they are due to extraneous factors. For example, one has little control over the wastage of time due to a traffic jam. Self generated time wasters or internal time wasters, however, can be controlled to a larger extent. Let us examine how we can go about controlling some of the commonly known time wasters. Along with it an attempt has been made to give point-by-point workable suggestions to avoid these time wasters.

A prescription for Procrastination:

One day when Mr.X was a teen-ager, his father gave some advice about a task he had been avoiding. Throw your hat over the fence, he said.

What do you mean?

He chuckled. When you face a fence too difficult to climb, throw your hat over it. Then you will have to figure out how to get to the other side. He smiled reminiscing. That’s how X’s father got to Chicago.

His father had grown up in a rural area and X often wondered how he moved to such a big city leaving family and friends behind.

X’s father was barely 20, and didn’t have much, except a boat. Early one summer morning, he packed clothes, shoved off in his boat Dixie and chugged into Chicago’s harbor. The next day went looking for work. Jobs are tough to find, and X’s father was tempted to give up his dream. But he threw his hat over the fence. He sold Dixie his boat and figured if he was going to make it in Chicago, he needed money. Once he gave up the boat there was no coming back.

X knew the rest of the story – how his father started work with a power company, met his mother at a dance and carved out a career and a good life right there in Chicago. But what X particularly remembered was the power of commitment.

The day his dad sold Dixie, all his energies were directed towards forging new life. This principle works for every day too. When you make a bold move and put yourself in an untenable situation, you are forced to climb the fence.

For example, for too long X’s wife Betty and X had been putting off painting their living room. Finally Betty threw hat over the fence. He invited friends over for dessert Sunday evening, his wife said, to see their living room. The paint cans came out pretty quickly; the work was done in two days.

The previous owner of our house had walled up a bedroom window above to make a closet. For years Betty and X talked about removing the false wall to let in more light. But it seemed like too much work.

Then X’s brother Herb, an enthusiastic handyman, came for a visit. He bored a hole in the wall to determine its construction. Simple he declared and to X’s astonishment, he ripped away a chunk of wallboard.

There was no turning back. Herb, X’s youngest son Kit and X went to work tearing down the wall. Before the day was over, their bedroom boasted a graceful window above. The actual doing turned out to be simple. It was imagination that had turned a molehill into a mountain. But the effort would not have happened if his brother had not made it possible to go ahead.

So the next time a project seems too imposing, even impossible, throw your hat over the fence. The ship model kit found in the attic? X’s son Peter and his family were moving into a new home in a few months. X threw hat over the fence by promising him the completed model as a house warming gift.

X finished the ship. His son loves it.