Time management is a biblical concept Ephesians 5:15-16 “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of time …” We all get the same hours in a day yet it might seem others are more productive than we are. These people have probably mastered the art of good time management.

From a work perspective, there are a lot of changes one can make which allows for better time management. I recently attended a Working Smarter course and gained a few useful tips that have worked wonders for me. I have also received positive feedback from colleagues and managers of people who attended this course.

Some of the tips discussed include:

  1.  Planning your time – plan the work and work the plan
  2.  How to gain one hour a day – every day
  3.  Personal, positive goal setting
  4.  Dealing with interruptions
  5.  Winning the paperwork battle
  6.  Overcoming procrastination
  7.  Getting the best out of others
  8.  Managing stress and anxiety

The Working Smarter course was run by Graham Robert-Phelps. Graham also wrote a book on Working Smarter which delves deeper into the tips above-mentioned. One area I really struggled with before this intervention was dealing with interruptions. Working in an open office plan and being HR does not help matters as you are there to offer support and guidance. However, it is useful to set priorities and boundaries especially when you are trying to meet deadlines. The key is in communicating to the person in a respectful way and setting time aside to deal with their issue (assuming it is not an urgent matter).

Closely related to time management is an area of importance to most HR practitioners and that is Work-Life balance. Very often, people are unable to handle the pressures of work which spills over into their personal life and vice versa. (The effects of personal issues on work are beyond the scope of this article).

It is highly likely that the pressure of work culminate in stress and anxiety. This can have long-term adverse effects on an individual, resulting in lost time for a company due to sickness absence.

It is important to find the source of stress and anxiety, which is probably triggered by the pressures of work. However, if you know how to manage your time well and work smarter, you’re unlikely to experience stress or burnout for that matter which ultimately results in good work-life balance.

For those who are struggling to get their employees to work smarter and would like to arrange a training session, please get in touch and we will recommend you accordingly. For those who relate closely with any of the areas covered by the tips listed above and would like more information, please send an email the  . MT

About the Author

Yolanda Norah Chavi holds a BA Human Resources Management; BA Hons Industrial & Organisational Psychology; MSc Business Psychology & CIPD Level 7 Award in Employment Law.

She is also a volunteer HR Practitioner for Majestic Group Holdings, an Arts, Media and Entertainment services provider; Training Consultant for Flying High Leadership Consultancy; Sub-Editor of the Zim-Abroad Magazine and more recently, an HR columnist for MoniqueToday Magazine

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