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Time Management

How To Manage Your Time Better

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Spend your time doing the important things!

How many times have you wished you had more time in the day to get things done?
Managing one’s time can be a difficult task for some and easy for others. For me time management, and staying on task at times can be difficult.  As an entrepreneur I’ve learned that 20-percent of my efforts often cause 80-percent of the results.  As business people, we need to avoid “spinning our tires,” on time-sinks and get more engaged in the 80% results – the thoughts, activities and conversations that produce most of our business results.
Being productive and still having time to do things we enjoy can also happen if we work at it. I find that I can accomplish a ton of stuff with a “to-do-list” and a few simple rules, here they are:

Make a To- Do List:

Sync and Use Your Calendar:

Organize your calendar and use it, make sure all of your devices are synced up – this is critical.  To get started, I plug in family, vacation time first and also my lunch breaks.   Many studies show that people who take a designated lunch break are more effective and have less stress.

Once those important items are in my calendar I start filling it in with work stuff.  don’t forget to schedule time to check and respond to calls and emails, and consider color coding like-minded activities or time off.

When working at my desk, I schedule time to return calls and check email – 3x daily.  this eliminates the need to answer immediately and get distracted.

I find that the weekly view setting on your calendar is the BEST view for proactive planning and I try to follow a 60/40 rule of scheduling, which means that 60% of my time is scheduled with 40% left open for flexibility.

Designate Time:

Get up an 1/2 hour earlier or stay up a 1/2 hour later to read the paper, check emails, surf Internet, etc. These are all huge time sinks ~ consider scheduling them on your list.

Handle Emails and Paperwork Once:

Paperwork, checking e-mail, checking voice-mail, paying bills, typing estimates, etc., are incredible time drains. Going paperless is one approach, but processing paper more effectively is what really gives you control. I use the 3-F’s for emails and paperwork;

When filing I use broad, generic headings to generate and file with fewer file folders.  I make sure to use specific titles and add a date to the end of each file title. [e.g., Robillard Deck Scope 01.01.2016]

Using technology like email and specialty software, such as, accounting software, and online banking [paperless] to save you time.

Stay Focused:


Keep Moving:

Break it Down into Parts:


Delegation, done properly, plays to your teams strengths, develops team members, provides ownership and allows fresh perspectives. It frees up the bosses time and allows more time for executive development, organizational awareness and time to get stuff done!

If you delegate, follow these 4 easy steps:

  1. Tell Them:  this means setting an expectation, results, scope of authority, budget and time-frame
  2. Show them:  train and model behavior or tasks.  Training can take time, do you have it?
  3. Watch them:  Observe and support, with the goal of self-instruction
  4. Evaluate Them:  Provide feedback and future focused direction

Tip: People often we delegate the “process” rather than the “result.” You need to instruct adequately, and then DEFINE THE RESULT in order to delegate effectively.

Manage Your Phone Disruptions:

Answering the phone constantly can reduce your effectiveness.  Practice not answering the phone just because it’s ringing and e-mails just because they show up.

Not all of us have the luxury of an assistant or phone service but having someone screen your calls is a very effective way to stay focused.

Other approaches involve;

Create Productive Meetings:

Meetings are part of business and I truly believe that Herbert V. Prochnow was correct when he said, “A committee of three often gets more done if two don’t show up.”

If you are in charge of setting up the meeting, consider this:

Say No!

You cant please everyone and “No” is sometimes the best answer.  Be ok with it and get comfortable saying it.


Having no time is a huge excuse, I hear all the time. Remember by prioritizing you will be able to focus on what you do best. y following some of these tips, and , controlling interruptions you can reduce the stress of “constant urgency,” and that “where does the time go” feeling.

Oh yeah, don’t forget to continue to get better, not only through continued education, but use your time in the car to listen to audio-books and other podcasts to keep your mind and skills sharp!

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