14 Sep 5 Time Management Skills to Make You a Better Employee
There are only so many hours in a day, and with eight or so of them devoted to working, it might very well feel like you’ll never get caught up.
It’s so easy to feel discouraged, especially if you have that coworker who seems on top of everything all the time. But don’t fret! You, too, can improve your time management skills and learn how to have everything together.
1. Write a to-do list and check it every day.
This can be a very simple list of tasks that you know need to be completed. They can be big things or small ones, anything from “update time card” or “send project update email” to larger ones, like “prepare for presentation” and “meeting with the boss.” This can help you understand what’s sitting in front of you and get a better sense of what’s a big deal and a smaller, more manageable item. Plus, as you move through the day, you get the satisfaction of crossing things off.
Take that list you just wrote and consider any applicable deadlines. Which items are multiple-step projects, and which can be done quickly? Which things are in higher demand from your team or your manager? Figure out the absolute most important things that, without question, have to be done first. Start there. It’s fine to interchange a big thing with a small thing to lighten your stress and concentration demands, but this is the best way to ensure you’re not letting something pressing fall through the cracks.
3. Set deadlines.
These can influence your priorities for sure! If something’s due tomorrow, it needs more of your full attention than something due in two weeks. It will also show you where you have some room to breathe while also helping you realize if it’s a day where you really need to buckle down and get to work instead of taking a longer lunch break.
If you’re part of a team working on a project and you know your plate is a little more full than someone else’s, ask for help! You’re all working together toward the same goal, and a time might come when someone on your team will ask you to pick up a little slack for them. If you can offload something to help focus on a more pressing deadline, explain the situation and see who might be able to help.
5. Set a schedule.
If you’ve got a lot of little things to work on, or if you want to make sure some smaller items get done while you need to devote a big portion of your day to a larger project, set yourself a schedule for the day of the week. Divvy up time for each project, including breaks and checking email, and then stick to it. This way, you’ll know exactly what you need to be doing when, without devoting your entire day to a project and losing track of other things.
Time management really means making sure your minutes and hours count. The clearer the sense you have of spending your day, the easier it will be to make sure everything gets done. Who knows — maybe someone on your team will come to you for advice on how you make it all look so easy!
Start Working Today
If you’re interested in other time management advice or looking for a new job to better utilize your newly sharpened skills, contact LeadingEdge Personnel today. We have a stable of great companies we partner with, and they’re looking for people with your skills and abilities to start working right away. Call LeadingEdge, and let’s get started!