About Time! - 120 Tips For Those With No Time

About Time!About Time! is divided into 12 sections:
Prioritising and planning; Procrastination; Working efficiently with others; General time management strategies; Managing the phone; Computer shortcuts; Email management; Paper-handling; Meetings; Managing the home-based office; Travel time; Balancing work and family.

You'll find it very easy and quick to find help in whatever area you're currently challenged by, using the comprehensive index and the bulleted key point lists.

Here's just one example to whet your appetite.

Key Point 23
When you ask for something to be done by a specified date, let the person concerned know that you've diarised their next action - it keeps them accountable

This can be done face-to-face or when you're issuing instructions over the phone. You can use it for staff, bosses, colleagues, and even clients. You can minute it in a meeting, make a note in your diary; or, if you use an electronic system you can simultaneously communicate a task and keep a record in your calendar. The options are varied. The key point is to let the other person know you're doing it. If you're on the phone, say, 'I'm just making a diary note to expect … by … Is that OK with you?'

I was having a meeting with two partners of an accountancy firm. They had both identified themselves as 'challenged' in the arena of time management, and wanted their whole firm to be involved in an extended time management training programme. As we finished the briefing and agreed on dates, costs and all the usual details, Ray offered to send me some information. Without even thinking about the impact of my action I turned to the relevant spot in my diary and wrote a note to expect it. And of course it arrived as expected.

We started the training a few weeks later. The group was discussing how to communicate expectations. To my surprise and amusement Ray told his staff about this incident in our meeting.

'You folk know I sometimes forget to do things I've said I'll do,' he said. 'But I have to tell you, when I saw Robyn write in her diary that by a certain date I would send her something, I knew I was in trouble if I didn't!'

There was a roar of laughter - we all learnt a really important point.

And here's a bonus point. Ray knew the value of exposure. He's a very good manager, and not afraid to admit his weaknesses to his staff. Smart move - they know them anyway, and exposure brings respect.

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