How to Manage Time With Tips that Work

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Time is precious and managing it deftly decides for the success and failure of most of life's initiative, especially in the professional field. Two industry top shot disclose their secrets for deft time management. Read on!

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"Time management is an important aspect of life and is a pre-requisite for success in whatever we do including Business. Each one of us has got only 24 hours in a day but that seems to be not good enough since everybody has apparently got so much of work in hand that he finds himself always short of time. Therefore, time management is a real need of the hour and we must plan to use each available minute of our time to the optimum level. Time once lost is a loss for ever and cannot be recouped. We must, therefore, we must endeavour to utilise the available time in best possible manner," -- says RK Agarwal, a former partner in S. R. Batliboi & Co. since 1978. Agrawal has over 40 years post qualification experience in various fields like Audit, Consultancy, etc. He is connected with various Chambers of Commerce as Committee Chairman / Member, Permanent Invitee, etc. and is presently the Chairman, CII (Eastern Region).

Here are RK Agarwal's top 5 suggestions for effective time management -

1. Proper Planning: We must plan our daily activities in advance, allocating appropriate time for completion of each such job in a most effective manner. We always have a long list of jobs to be done and the time at our disposal is rather limited, so we must focus on each particular job at a time and make serious efforts to complete it successfully within the specified time schedule. It need not be overemphasized that the failure to complete any specific job in the given timeframe, would obviously affect all other schedules and may lead to accumulation of pending work. Therefore, a disciplined approach on timely completion of each activity/job is of paramount importance.

2. Delegation of work: Proper delegation of work amongst team members is quite critical for success in all walks of life, particularly for an entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur, one needs to identify the right person for each job, based on the evaluation of aptitude, competence and capability of the concerned person. He must know the strengths and weaknesses of his colleagues so that he is in a position to pick up the right person for the right job. This process, if carried out judiciously and in an unbiased manner, would obviously ensure the achievement of desired results. It should also be kept in mind that delegation yields best results only when the leader and his team members have complete trust, respect and confidence in each other. Moreover, to get full advantage and complete success out of delegation of work, there has to be a close monitoring process to ensure that wherever the work is not moving as per target schedule, appropriate management action is initiated to take care of the deficient areas.

3. Prioritisation: Generally, we have a lot of things to do in a given timeframe and it may not be possible to do all such things in one go. Therefore, we must prioritise our "To Do List" and whatever is most important, should be done first, to be followed by other jobs in terms of their priority. One should always keep the list of

"To Do things" limited to important matters and "not so critical things" may be kept aside to be handled only after the completion of important things.

4. Maintenance of Time Log: To develop the art of time management, the best way is to keep full details of the time spent for each job/activity and compare the same with the time allotted for completion thereof. A review of this time log would clearly reflect the activities for which we have spent excess/unwanted time and this process would help us in better management of our time in future. This review may also reflect the activities which could be delegated to others, thereby giving more time to the entrepreneur for other critical jobs.

5. Time Management – An Art: Time management calls for complete discipline in life, with an aptitude to succeed. It is not something which can be developed overnight, rather it is a habit which must be inculcated in life since childhood. The process of time management, in fact, starts from the days of our studentship and it keeps on growing as we move ahead in our life long journey. If one develops the habit of idling his time as a child/student, then it becomes quite difficult for him to ensure fruitful time management going forward. In fact, time management is an art which one acquires and develop through continuous practice.

Arijit Dutta is the Managing Director of Priya Entertainments Pvt Ltd (PEPL), owner of the iconic PRIYA Cinema and Bioscope brands. PEPL has also diversified into Eco tourism by setting up Eastern India's most modern Eco Adventure Tourism hub at Khairabera, Purulia. Mr Arijit Dutta also spearheads Eastern Fashion Legacy and co owner of Jalpaiguri Royals, a celebrity cricket team. His top 10 secrets to ace time management-

  1. Plan your day in the first your hour of each new day. Start your day with a complete time plan. This is the most important period of the day when you schedule your plans.
  2. Carry a schedule of the week and keep a record of the same for a period of time. This shall help in maximising productivity of time.
  3. All activity should have a time line of schedule. Discipline of time management is the key. Lessen the things that drain your time and energy. With additional time you do have you'll get more done in a focused, energised way.
  4. Do a time audit for one week and look at exactly where your time is going. From these results, think about where you might want to redistribute your time. Never underestimate how long a particular task will take us. Keep this in mind.
  5. Schedule time for interruptions - take short breaks in between for better results.
  6. Take lengthy breaks away from work at the weekend, in the evening and on holiday to help you stay productive long term.
  7. Do put up "Do not disturb" sign as and when required. Do not be available always. Avoid or completely cut off any other distractions in form of social media unless used as tools to generate business
  8. Prioritize. Look at your lists and identify your top priorities. Tackle your most important or thought-heavy tasks at the point of your day where you are most mentally engaged and alert.
  9. Set goals and deadlines. Tasks require deadlines and goals--these are the ways for you to measure your forward progress and success. Deadlines are critical to the outcome. If not set in a realistic timeframe and managed well they will become a major source of stress.
  10. One must remember that it is impossible to get everything done. End your working day at a fixed time. One for an ideal day, and one latest time that you won't work past.