5 ways to manage your time at work
We've all been there; pressing deadlines, important business meetings and the old maxim 'so much to do, so little time' reverberating around your head. It really doesn't have to be like this. Making your 24 hours go further is easier than you think and just a little organisation will enable you to manage your time at work much more effectively.
Plan and prioritiseYou might have a revolving door of projects, meetings and deadlines but suggesting that they all deserve your equal attention is like pretending that you don't have a favourite child. Some things are more paramount than others and making a list of your tasks for each day and putting them in order of importance will ensure that you meet those more pressing concerns. Be warned though, this might just mean that updating your Twitter bio has to wait until tomorrow.
Know when you work bestIt's natural for your enthusiasm and work rate to ebb and flow throughout the day, so realising when you're at your most productive could help you better organise your tasks. If you find that you clock in with a real zip but then tend to procrastinate after lunch, you should address the more difficult and high priority jobs at the start of the day.
Stop staring at your inboxEmail can prove to be the biggest stealer of time with a constant stream of reminders and drivel coming in from all angles. Replying to all of these can be wasted energy and allocating certain times of day when you allow yourself to comment 'LOL' on cat related memes will actually improve efficiency and focus.
You can also choose to organise your emails into separate folders so that only the important messages get through to your main inbox, allowing social notifications to be read at a more convenient time.
DelegateWhile you may feel like Superman, even Clark Kent could be undone by a heavy workload so don't be afraid to share the responsibility amongst your colleagues. Be realistic with yourself about what you can do and be honest if you think that somebody else could do it better. Having too many tasks to complete can leave you unable to focus and so delegating work down the line can leave you able to concentrate on more important matters.
Say "no"This simple two letter word can often feel like the bullet from a loaded gun, but a polite decline every now and again can stop your schedule from becoming unmanageable. Colleagues and superiors will often make unplanned for demands of you, but providing you can resist the urge to continually blurt it out like a toddlers first word, a tactfully placed "no" here and there will prevent your To-Do list from becoming infinite.
It's often said that the most efficient people amongst us are the ones who know what tasks not to do and in a world of increased working hours and responsibilities, this rings more true than ever. Time management has therefore become an even more vital skill in the workplace and learning how to plan, prioritise and address your duties will allow you to get the most out of your day.