Managers' Library Home

  Now in:- Skip Navigation LinksTrainers' Library Home » Training Materials Home » Articles » Time Management


Time Management Articles

View all Trainers' Library Categories View All Training Materials Categories
Time management is an invaluable skill for everyone. Good time management, including effective planning and prioritising, setting goals and knowing when and what to delegate, helps participants to be more effective and accomplish more.

Have you tried our Free Samples? Click here to try out our training materials.


 

12 Tips for Handling Paperwork

Article Overview:
This article, from Clare Forrest, provides 12 great tips for managing the paper mountain!

About

Article Overview:
This article, from Clare Forrest, provides 12 great tips for managing the paper mountain!

Opening Words:
1. Get your manager to write margin notes on letters. You can compose a reply with their comments.

2. Speed read through mail/reports etc. Highlight key points before handing to your manager. Collect any information needed for an answer and attach it to the original. Can't speed read? Contact us.

3. Reply by phone instead of letter wherever possible.

4. Always provide a summary to a lengthy report.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who finds themselves dealing with a mountain of paperwork.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Burnt-Out or Fired-Up?

Article Overview:
This is a great new article from Mandy Green of the Matchett Group that looks at some of the unique challenges of the training role. Mandy offers some clear advice and tips for managing the more stressful aspects of the job. A must-read for all trainers!

About

Article Overview:
This is a great new article from Mandy Green of the Matchett Group that looks at some of the unique challenges of the training role. Mandy offers some clear advice and tips for managing the more stressful aspects of the job. A must-read for all trainers!

Opening Words:
A trainer’s life is not always a happy one, as one of our colleagues found when, after a very long journey, he arrived at a hotel in Siberia in the early hours of the morning to give a training course the next day. The taxi had driven away, the hotel staff denied all knowledge of his room reservation or the training course, then proceeded to rip him off by over-charging for the booking that he had to make with his own credit card.

Other worst-case scenarios include: arriving at the venue to find the course materials have not turned up; arriving at the venue, only to be told that the venue has been changed; there’s also ‘the show must go on’ syndrome, when, despite feeling at death’s door, you still run the course; and finally, and not least, when there are tears, tantrums and aggression - from delegates: (this can occur in soft skills courses, where some fairly tender areas can be probed) which you have to deal with professionally. Being hurtled around from airports to train stations, dealing with cancelled flights and trains, or spending long hours driving, are also par for the course in a trainer’s life.

Useful Reading For:
A must-read for all trainers.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Fighting for Space

Article Overview:
In this article, Justin Collinge looks at why it can be difficult to focus on that task you really need to complete.

About

Article Overview:
In this article, Justin Collinge looks at why it can be difficult to focus on that task you really need to complete.

Opening Words:
Jim is aware he needs to get on with that piece of work. He’s been putting it off because he knows it’s going to be tough – but time has now run out. So, girding up his loins, he settles down and is ready to go…

First, he puts on some music because he knows it helps him concentrate.

He’s also worried about another piece of work but leaves that to one side because the deadline for this is nearer.

He’s quite hungry - but isn’t going to stop now. He’s decided he’ll reward himself with a snack once he’s worked for an hour...

Useful Reading For:
Inclusion in any course on time management, or anyone interested in making more effective use of their time at work.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

How Can I Boost Initiative In My Team?

Article Overview:
In this article Jennifer looks at some suggestions for getting people to take responsibility for themselves and show initiative.

About

Article Overview:
In this article Jennifer looks at some suggestions for getting people to take responsibility for themselves and show initiative.

Opening Words:
Do you ever get asked for your advice, opinion or assistance? In fact, do you seem to spend most of your time responding to people’s queries and telling them what they should be doing? And do you feel that you are repeatedly asked the same questions by the same people?

It’s frustrating, isn’t it? You have a job to do, a team to manage, results to achieve and deadlines to meet. You could do without these distractions because that’s what they feel like. Why can’t people just use their initiative and get on with the job?

Useful Reading For:
Managers and in particular first time managers.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

I'll Just Get the File Out! - Conquer Procrastination For Ever

Article Overview:
This article from Mark Forster, could be one of the most important you read this year - particularly if you find yourself, like many of us, putting off work on important projects - like joining Trainers' Library! :-)

About

Article Overview:
This article from Mark Forster, could be one of the most important you read this year - particularly if you find yourself, like many of us, putting off work on important projects - like joining Trainers' Library! :-)

Opening Words:
I'd be willing to bet that you, along with every other person reading this article, has at least one important project that would make an enormous difference to your life - if only you could get round to doing it!

In fact if you are procrastinating over only one important project you are a quite exceptional person. Most of us could produce a whole list of things we are procrastinating about. Not only do we procrastinate about things we'd really much prefer not to have to do at all (such as getting our tax returns in on time), but we even manage to procrastinate about things we are fully committed to and enjoy doing. Most authors love writing or they wouldn't be authors, but "writer's block" is so common that the phrase has become proverbial.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who finds themselves 'putting things off'.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

It's Like Walking Across a Muddy Field

Article Overview:
In this article by Mark Forster, Mark provides some really pragmatic advice for managing backlogs.

About

Article Overview:
In this article by Mark Forster, Mark provides some really pragmatic advice for managing backlogs.

Opening Words:
There are basically two types of task which we are faced with during a typical day. First there is the type of task which either gets done or doesn't get done. You either renew the car insurance or you don't. You either paint the bedroom or you don't. You either buy a new dress or you don't. You either send your great aunt a birthday card or you don't. The consequences of doing or not doing this type of task may range from the trivial to the momentous, but essentially they are one-offs.

Then there is the type of task which produces a backlog if it is not attended to. Dealing with paper is the classic example of this type of task. Have you ever noticed how paper has the strange tendency to breed if given the chance? Leave two bits of paper together overnight and miraculously when you come down in the morning you have a six-inch pile of papers in various stages of inaction. Leave the pile on its own for another 24 hours and you have an office full of piles of paper.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who finds themselves having to deal with a backlog.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Keep Focused

Article Overview:
In this article Damian Hughes shares some tips and advice on how to keep focused when faced with a changing environment.

About

Article Overview:
In this article Damian Hughes shares some tips and advice on how to keep focused when faced with a changing environment.

Opening Words:
If I asked you to describe how you feel about change, what would you say? Many people often come up with a mixture of negative and positive terms. On the one hand fear, anxiety, loss, danger and panic; on the other, exhilaration, risk-taking, excitement, improvements, energising. With a mix of emotions, keeping focused can be difficult during a period of change, and maintaining your best performance may become more of a challenge. The power of focus works on what I call ‘The Spice Girls Principle’.

The more you want and focus on something, the more of it you get. However, take a few moments to think about what actually happens to your focus when you are under the pressures of change.

Useful Reading For:
Everyone.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

Organisational Maturity

Article Overview:
In this article, Paul Ackerley discusses the need to work more efficiently and effectively in the current global climate.

About

Article Overview:
In this article, Paul Ackerley discusses the need to work more efficiently and effectively in the current global climate.

Opening Words:
At the time of writing (April 2011), a major topic of conversation here in the UK, particularly for those working in the public sector are the cuts being implemented as a result of last year’s Spending Review. There is understandably much concern and trepidation around due to the potential impact of the spending cuts.

As you will have seen from the news, many public sector organisations started to make cuts in spending and people resources even before the results of the Spending Review were known, in anticipation of the reduction in finances. Many private sector organisations had been going through a similar process for some months, or indeed, years already.

Useful Reading For:
Managers

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

Time Management - The Pareto Principle

Article Overview:
In this article Tony looks at the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 principle or rule – a useful insight that will help with many aspects of life, at work and home.

About

Article Overview:
In this article Tony looks at the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 principle or rule – a useful insight that will help with many aspects of life, at work and home.

Opening Words:
The Pareto Principle is known by many names and seems to be an almost intrinsic law of nature. Amongst its other names two in particular pinpoint what it is about: the law of imbalance and the 80/20 rule. The principle can be expressed in many ways and is applicable, some would say, almost universally in whatever field of human endeavour you work.

In time management terms it suggests that, unless we actually try to do something about it then, for most us for most of the time around 80% of what we achieve comes from just 20% of what we do. In other words, there is a huge imbalance between effort and results.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who wants to improve their management of time.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Time Management or Behaviour Management?

Article Overview:
Joanne Barnfather takes a look at our behaviour and how it affects the use of our time.

About

Article Overview:
Joanne Barnfather takes a look at our behaviour and how it affects the use of our time.

Opening Words:
Time is precious. You cannot save time - you cannot put a couple of hours away in a cupboard to use later when you need them. It seems that time is the greatest enemy of many people. Yet some people seem to get the job done with ease and in time. The difference is each person's ability to manage their time. It is essential to be aware of how you use your time.

We are all given 86,400 seconds every day, what do you do with them?

Useful Reading For:
Everyone, especially those who'd like to manage their time better by working smarter, not harder.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

Tips for Better Meetings

Article Overview:
This is a really useful article from Brian Hunt, which includes tools for assessing meetings and making future meetings more effective.

About

Article Overview:
This is a really useful article from Brian Hunt, which includes tools for assessing meetings and making future meetings more effective.

Opening Words:
Do you think that most meetings are badly run and a waste of time? If so, your views are supported by the findings of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. According to the research they carried out:
• The average meeting takes place in the company conference room at 11am and lasts for 90 minutes.
• It is attended by nine people - two managers, four co-workers, two subordinates and one outsider - who have received two hour prior notification.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who attends or organises meetings - that's all of us then!

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

To Do Lists - How we hate them!

Article Overview:
In this article, Mark Forster looks at the advantages and disadvantages of 'to do' lists and provides some ideas for making your list of outstanding tasks work better.

About

Article Overview:
In this article, Mark Forster looks at the advantages and disadvantages of 'to do' lists and provides some ideas for making your list of outstanding tasks work better.

Opening Words:
Personally I have never been a great fan of to-do lists. If they work for you, fine, don't let me put you off. But I know I am not alone in finding them very difficult to manage.

The theory behind a to-do list goes something like this. First thing in the morning before you start anything else, you write down everything you have to do during the day (or even better do this as your last action the previous day). You then go carefully through the list and work out what order to do the items in the list. There are various methods of prioritising the list, but they all boil down to some form of balancing urgency and importance.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who finds the need to work from a 'to do list'.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Wholehearted Living

Article Overview:
Mark Forster's article looks at the danger of saying "yes" against your better judgement, and the knock on affect this can have on time management.

About

Article Overview:
Mark Forster's article looks at the danger of saying "yes" against your better judgement, and the knock on affect this can have on time management.

Opening Words:
I can't remember who it was - but a year or two ago someone wrote on one of the email lists to which I belong that she had learned never to say "yes" unless she could say it wholeheartedly. Whoever it was, I owe her a debt of thanks because it is one of the best lessons that I have ever learned.

The context was how easy it is for our lives to fill up with responsibilities that we have taken on more or less reluctantly. When someone asks us to do something, it is often difficult to say "no." So we end up saying "yes" against our better judgement. And one of the reasons why it is so easy to say "yes" against our better judgement is because we often don't have a clear and easy way to tell what our better judgement is. The other person will often come up with highly persuasive reasons which make us feel that we will be uncaring or ungrateful or illogical or mean or reckless or whatever if we don't agree with them. And since we don't want to feel any of these things we say "yes" reluctantly - and regret it later!

Useful Reading For:
This is a useful idea to use in assertiveness training but is relevant to anyone who finds it difficult to say 'no'.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article





Label

Work and the Meaning of Life

Article Overview:
Graham Guest considers the issue of work life balance in the 21st Century, and suggests that rather than separating the two aspects of our lives, perhaps we need to begin looking at work in different ways.

About

Article Overview:
Graham Guest considers the issue of work life balance in the 21st Century, and suggests that rather than separating the two aspects of our lives, perhaps we need to begin looking at work in different ways.

Opening Words:
A favourite question of my father's was, "Do you live to eat or eat to live?" I long ago found the answer to that one: I live to eat...and drink and travel and talk. Now the big question seems to be, "Do we live to work or work to live?" and over recent years the strange concept of work-life balance has appeared. I say strange because the juxtaposition of the two processes suggests a certain mutual exclusivity: either we work or we live.

A lot has been written about work-life balance and I am reluctant to add to the volume of words. On this subject, as on many others, I think that everything has probably already been said and we are now engaged in reordering and repackaging a fixed number of thoughts and ideas. I could make this the shortest article ever and suggest that readers type 'work-life balance' into a search engine.

Useful Reading For:
Everyone.

Downloads
Available to Light
Article
Article (Handout Version)





Label

Powered by 

Copyright Glasstap® Limited (1999 - 2017)