Time management refers to a range of skills, tools, and techniques used to manage time when accomplishing specific tasks, projects and goals. This set encompasses a wide scope of activities, and these include planning, allocating, setting goals, delegation, analysis of time spent, monitoring, organizing, scheduling, and prioritizing. Initially, time management referred to just business or work activities, but eventually the term broadened to include personal activities as well. A time management system is a designed combination of processes, tools, techniques, and methods. Usually time management is a necessity in any project development as it determines the project completion time and scope.
Stephen R. Covey has offered a categorization scheme for the hundreds of time management approaches that they reviewed:
• First generation: reminders based on clocks and watches, but with computer implementation possible; can be used to alert a person when a task is to be done.
• Second generation: planning and preparation based on calendar and appointment books; includes setting goals.
• Third generation: planning, prioritizing, controlling (using a personal organizer, other paper-based objects, or computer or PDA-based systems) activities on a daily basis. This approach implies spending some time in clarifying values and priorities.
• Fourth generation: being efficient and proactive using any of the above tools; places goals and roles as the controlling element of the system and favors importance over urgency.
Time management literature can be paraphrased as follows:
• "Get Organized" - paperwork and task triage
• "Protect Your Time" - insulate, isolate, delegate
• "Set gravitational goals" - that attract actions automatically
• "Achieve through Goal management Goal Focus" - motivational emphasis
• "Work in Priority Order" - set goals and prioritize... [continues]
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