Once again, we’ve experienced the fun of turning back the clocks. I’d like to think I utilized that extra hour wisely, but honestly, not so much. How did you use yours?
Setting the clocks back reminded me that time management is something we all could improve upon and help our staff with. Are you modeling good time management skills? Do you ever talk about it? Do you brainstorm with your team on ways to improve productivity in your department?
The days mostly fly by. We get up, get ready for work, look up and it’s time to go. But if we don’t take a moment to plan and prioritize, a lot of our efforts may be wasted. And if we’re frustrated with the lack of progress of our staff, how much of that is our fault?
Do your meetings have specific agendas? Do you end with clear assignments and expectations? Do you periodically let different staff lead the meetings, and, if so, do they know what to do to lead a productive meeting?
Every day we have the opportunity to plan, budget our time, prioritize our needs and act upon the things that need to be resolved. Yet often we just plow ahead, simply taking things as they come. As we approach year end, it seems we often have even more on our plates, so how do we deal with that? We need to step back and appreciate what must be done and determine how best to resolve the important items and remove the extraneous.
Certainly, some individuals are better than others in planning out their time and getting things done. But if someone is struggling, it seems easier to get frustrated with them as opposed to lending a hand. Reach out to the employee who’s never on time or can’t seem to get things done. As much as possible, help them develop a time budget with specific expectations for deliverables at specific times.
Reset your meetings. Revisit agendas if you have them or prepare them if you don’t. You may find you have meetings that are no longer necessary or can be shortened. And if you have some great time saving tips, share them! We can all use help these days and working together can improve departmental relationships and results.
In the meantime, the clock is ticking!