Friday, April 18, 2008

Time Management Tip

OK... I'm a geek, but this is how I roll...

After being gone from vacation, it took me a few days to get my feet under me again and I felt overwhelmed by the volume of emails, tasks, and unknowns in my to-do list. After spinning for a few days, I decided to map out some time chunks of the most important items in that day.

I have a lot questions asked of me throughout the day, meetings, quick emails that need responses that currently are simply part of my job. However, my "task work" would start piling up and when I'm not getting enough sleep, I feel buried and very little gets done. I took a stab at my typical day, I guessed I had four hours a day for the most important tasks I had to get done and listed them in 15 min chunks:


Update Vision/Technology Plan for ARI 30 min

Project Meeting and Update to ABC Inc 15 min

Get initial notes together for Fri Conf call 30 min

Follow up on billing issues with DEF Inc. 15 min

Update and send Sr Manager Update 30 min

Work on 12-month Communication plan 45 min

Review Proposal for Billy Bob Hot Dogs 15 min

Update Vision/Tech plan for Badabing 30 min

Update Help Desk next steps and goals 30 min

Throughout the day I crossed these off as the emails and conversations would take place as time clipped away... Over the last four days, I averaged just over 3 hours of real task time per day actually completed, my email total went down 40%, and I feel more on top on my duties than ever over the past few months... Measuring what I actually do helps me plan for what I actually want to get done...

What works for you?

1 comment:

Michael Gray said...

Wow. You are a definite type-A personality. :)

I'm working on implementing the "Getting Things Done" process created by David Allen. Organization is not my strong suit, but this method is helping.

The best feature: empty email inbox. It's a relief to know that tasks are not sitting in a huge, nondescript bucket, but are organized into more accessible, specific categories.