This Mind Tools section shows you how to use personal time management skills. These are some of the most important career skills that you can learn. Time Management skills are essential for successful people - these are the practical techniques which have helped the leading people in business, sport and public service reach the pinnacles of their careers.
The skills explained in the articles below help you to become reliable and effective and show you how to identify and focus on the activities that give you the greatest returns. The section finishes by explaining goal-setting, which is a vitally important skill for achieving what you want to achieve with your life.
While you are reading these articles, have a look at the time management book reviews, resources and stores on the sidebars - these will help you to develop your skills further and will support you in your regular use of time management skills.
Costing Your Time - Finding out how much your time costs
Deciding Work Priorities - Doing tasks which add the greatest value Activity Logs - Understanding where you lose time
Small-Scale Planning - Action Plans
Prioritized To Do Lists - Doing the most important things first Personal Goal Setting - Planning to Live Your Life Your Way Scheduling Skills - Planning to make the most of your time
Time Management Skills
This chapter discusses personal time management skills. These are essential skills for effective people.
People who use these techniques routinely are the highest achievers in all walks of life, from business to sport to public service. If you use these skills well, then you will be able to function effectively, even under intense pressure.
At the heart of time management is an important shift in focus: Concentrate on results, not on being busy
Many people spend their days in a frenzy of activity, but achieve very little because they are not concentrating on the right things.
The 80:20 Rule
This is neatly summed up in the Pareto Principle, or the '80:20 Rule'. This argues that typically 80% of unfocussed effort generates only 20% of results. The remaining 80% of results are achieved with only 20% of the effort. While the ratio is not always 80:20, this broad pattern of a small proportion of activity generating non-scalar returns recurs so frequently as to be the norm in many areas.
By applying the skills in this chapter you can optimize your effort to ensure that you concentrate as much of your time and energy as possible on the high payoff tasks. This ensures that you achieve the greatest benefit possible with the limited amount of time available to you.
Time Management Tools
The tools we will discuss are:
Finding out how much your time is worth - Costing Your Time
Making sure you concentrate on the right things - Deciding Work Priorities Checking how you really spend your time - Activity Logs
Planning to solve a problem - Action Plans
Tackling the right tasks first - Prioritized To Do Lists
Deciding what your personal priorities should be - Personal Goal Setting Planning to make the best use of your time - Effective Scheduling Time management products reviewed - Reviews
By the end of this section, you should have a much clearer understanding of how to use time to its greatest effect.
Costing Your Time - Finding Out How Much Your Time is Worth
How to Use Tool:
The first part of your focus on results should be to work out how much your time costs. This helps you to see if you are spending your time profitably.
If you work for an organization, calculate how much you cost it each year. Include your salary, payroll taxes, the cost of office space you occupy, equipment and facilities you use, expenses, administrative support, etc. If you are self-employed, work the annual running costs of your business.
To this figure add a 'guesstimate' of the amount of profit you should...