Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Time Management - Priority List Building

A good exercise for completing a list of priority tasks is to use a system called time-blocking. Having compiled a list of specific tasks to be completed within a given week, you should have those tasks written down in a priority order. Now on a weekly calendar these can now be placed into time slots each broken down into 15 minute segments, this is the process of time-blocking. The beauty of this system is that it does not have to just be used with work tasks, it can equally be applied to home life as well.

Time-blocking can be difficult to master at first but will become easier the more you do it, a bit like physical exercise. It will become a beneficial skill once you are well-versed in practicing it but it does take need a lot thought and concentration in the early stages. Building time-blocking mental muscles requires a level of commitment and practice. The key to successfully managing your time is through repetition. It is the old adage of 'the more you do it, the better you will become'...and the pay-off is well worth the effort.

15 minute slots.

With calendar in hand, the day needs to be broken up into 15 minute sections. 15 minutes may seem like a very short period but those 15 minutes can be very productive ones. Losing a few of these sections throughout the day can have a quite an impact, after all only four of them equate to a whole hour and eat into your ability to accomplish the goals of the day. Taking a blank sheet place a clear line down the centre to break the day up. The division between work and personal life needs to be defined. This initial steps lays out the work-life balance from the outset. Try and adopt a hard and fast rule defining your work time as Monday to Friday and your weekend as personal time. It is too easy for work related subjects to creep into Saturday and Sunday. State these two days as un-related work days, block them as personal, when presented on paper before you the easier it is to be strict with your time and the more effective time-blocking becomes.

Block in your 'free' time.

It is all to easy to fore-go something you want to do in your personal life, like taking the family for a lake side picnic for example. A mind still in the office can easily push these days out down the agenda. Work related issues seemingly take on a higher gravity and bully everything else out of the way, it is common for people to trade personal life for work. So put up a wall by time-blocking work where it should be. By segmenting the day it is easy to define a definite cut-off point where work stops and your social life starts. This can be a good motivator on both sides of the spectrum as you know that you have say only another hour and a half until you meet-up with friends at the bowling centre encouraging you to everything wrapped up by the end of the day.

Block in your work time.

Start with the tasks that are a regular part of your job and also include those non-routine but priority factors as well. No matter what departmental or management level you are at work you will undoubtedly be responsible for performing key tasks and activities every day throughout the week. These may include detailing reports, setting up meetings, gathering data for presentations, even filling... it should all be factored in and planned into the time-blocking schedule whether it be large or small.

End of week review.

Another good element is to set yourself a little time at the end of the week to check and see progress and how close you are to reaching your desired goal. This can be useful for shaping your next week's calendar schedule and prioritizing those urgent tasks. Perhaps see it as a weekly strategic planning session where you can reflect on what possible changes can be put into place to speed things up or help define clearer road to that finishing line.

Mind the gap.

Interruptions and problems are unfortunately unavoidable so be pre-planned and insert flexible gaps to accommodate for these times. Hopefully most can be sorted within a 15 to 30 minute time frame so for every two hours in your time-blocking calendar insert a 30 minute gap for the 'unplanned' events of the day.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

How to Make Sure Your Time Management System Is Working

"Time management is intended to save time, not waste time."

Is your time management system failing?

Does it seem to take more effort than it is worth?

Does it regularly breakdown?

If your system is failing, then it's time to re-evaluate.

First we need to assess why it's not working:

Is your time management system is too complex? - This is actually the most common problem that causes systems to fail. Is it cumbersome or time-consuming? Do you use multiple tools or require a plan just to plan? If it takes more time to organize than it does to do the work then it is too complex.

Is it redundant? - Do you have multiple lists? Do you use more than one calendar? Are you duplicating work? Use one central planning tool, list and calendar.

Is it portable? - Where do you keep your time management system? Can you take it with you and have access to it at all times? You need to be able to capture ideas and retrieve information in real-time or your system fails.

Does it match your personality or work patterns? - If you are tech savvy, then en electronic organizing system is most efficient. If you are more comfortable with traditional pen and paper then carry your notebook and don't force yourself to struggle with a PDA. The best time management system is the one that works for you!

Tips to keep in mind:

* The simpler the better - Choose the simplest, most direct method to get the job done.
* Keep it centralized - Whatever your system, keep it in one place.
* Make it accessible - Make sure that you can get to your information and capture thoughts and tasks easily in real-time.
* Choose your tools carefully - Select the tools that accomplish what you need without additional bells and whistles that will distract you.
* You are the most important consideration - Your system must suit you, your personality, your work style and your way of thinking or processing information.

An effective time management system should save you time and effort. It should help you make the most efficient use of your time. It should not be a struggle to use. It should feel comfortable. Maybe not initially, but after using it for a bit, if it's still uncomfortable - re-assess, tweak it or ditch it and start over.


Monday, October 18, 2010

Gmail Priority Inbox: Awesome Email Filtering And Time Management System

I've been using Gmail for quite a long time now and it's been great. I especially enjoy Gmail Labs! As if that wasn't amazing enough, Google's creative heads now has another innovation for many of us who are overwhelmed by too much email: Gmail Priority Inbox.

What is Gmail Priority Inbox

You know how our inboxes are often flooded with messages daily? There's mail our colleagues, from our subscriptions, from family and friends, and spam. Some of these emails need to be responded to right away, some can be ignored, some may need responding at some point later. It can be tricky keeping track, right?

If you're having trouble dealing with your mails daily, then this is the solution. It can be really time-consuming to figure out which mails need to be read and what needs a reply ASAP.

What if your mail could predict what's really important for you without you having to sort through everything one by one?

This is what Gmail's Priority Inbox does. It's a great new way to handle information overload in Gmail. It helps you focus on the messages that really matter, without any complicated rules.

How it works

In the words of Google itself, "Priority Inbox splits your inbox into three sections: "Important and unread," "Starred" and "Everything else".

When you activate Gmail Priority Inbox, as your messages come in, Gmail automatically flags some of them as important. Amazingly, Gmail uses a variety of signals to predict:

Which messages are important, including the people you email most (if you email Joe a lot, a message from Joe is probably important); and

Which messages you open and reply to!

Your daily use of Gmail should "teach" it to categorize your messages for you! How cool is that?

Also, by clicking the plus or minus buttons at the top of the inbox to correctly mark a conversation as important or not important, you help Gmail learn your email reading and replying pattern! What's more, you can:

a.) set up filters to always mark certain things important or unimportant; or

b.) rearrange and customize the three inbox sections!

The Gmail Priority Inbox is undoubtedly a great system, and easy way to quickly see what needs immediate responding and what can wait - great for your time management! Try it today and let me know what you think!


Thursday, October 14, 2010

time wise management systems

• Time Wise Management Systems
Time Wise Management Systems provides innovative Lean, Lean Sigma and Six Sigma solutions that improve performance. We deploy tailored training, ...

• Time Wise Management Systems
Time Wise Management Systems. ... Client List. Companies who have utilized Time Wise products and services: .decimal. 3Dimensional Engineering, Inc. ...

• MEP Management Services Inc.
Time Wise Management Systems (TWMS), d/b/a Manufacturing Extension Partnership Management Services (MEP MSI) MEP MSI serves as the managing agent for a ...

• Time Wise Management Systems - Company Profile | LinkedIn
Time Wise Management Systems (TWMS) provide innovative Lean, Lean Sigma, and Six Sigma solutions that improve company's business performance. We deploy...

• Time Wise Management Systems
Rod Rodrigue, President/CEO of Time Wise Management Systems, highlighted the M.O.S.T.® program at the December 3, 2009, Jobs Summit hosted by President ...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

real time traffic management systems

• Transdyn - Advanced Traffic Management Systems and Intelligent ...
Transportation agencies rely upon our traffic management systems and ... clear incidents, and disseminate real-time traffic information to the public in ...

• A Simulation Laboratory for Evaluating Dynamic Traffic Management ...
(a) represent a wide range of traffic management systems;. (b) model drivers' response to real-time traffic information and controls; and, ...

• Recent Methodological Advances in Dynamic Traffic Management Systems
Recent Methodological Advances in Dynamic Traffic Management Systems .... Real-time simulation of traffic demand-supply interactions within DynaMIT, ...

• MPC - Design/Build vs. Traditional Construction User Delay ...
2.3 Real-Time Traffic Management Systems. Many metropolitan areas have created TMCs with various sources of data information. ...

• Statistical Models for Urban Traveller Information and Traffic ...
Most of them are based on historical and real-time data, and post current ... Models for Urban Traveller Information and Traffic Management Systems ...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

time management systems

• Time Management Systems
Time Guardian® Plus is an automated employee time management software which features seamless integration with Amano's latest Access Control products. ...

• Time Management System Obsoletes Other Time Management Techniques
Free Report: How To Replace Old Time Management Systems (That Never Worked Anyway)...

• Effective Time Management Starts With A Time Management System

Frustrated with your time management attempts? Then don't just track time; categorize it. Learn the secret to effective time management with this time ...

• Time Management by Steve Pavlina

Time management systems have become exceedingly popular in recent years... and with good reason. The ultimate potential benefit of such systems is the ...

• Time management - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Time Management from the Inside Out: The Foolproof System for Taking Control of Your Schedule—and Your Life (2nd ed.). New York: Henry Holt/Owl Books. pp. ...