Keeping time and managing it well within your day’s workload can prove beneficial to your productivity and health. Time management is a useful skill to possess as a professional. Companies appreciate it when employees are prompt, effective and efficient. Time management plays a role in promotion and performance.

In a two-part series, Talent360 will guide readers on how to manage their working hours productively.

According to, three crucial yardsticks can be used to define good time management in the workplace, namely:
• Productivity – how much you do;
• Performance – how well you do;
• Perception – how you and others feel about what you do.

A better time management plan at work means you continually strive to improve your effectiveness (what you do) and your efficiency (how you do it), both of which are important to determining your career direction.
Improving your time management isn’t as hard as you may think. And the resulting benefits can be huge. Below are a few guidelines to help you manage your time better.

Know your duties
You ought to be clear about what is expected of you. This is crucial because it defines what you decide to spend your time on and how long you should spend your time on it. That is the cornerstone of better time management and crucial if you want to be productive at work.

Know your goals
You need to know what you are aiming for, and when and how you will be able to get there.
Know what you want to be, want to do and want to have, because, as the saying goes, “If you don’t plant the seeds, you’ll end up with weeds”.
List your major work goals, and you’ll know what to spend your time on when you’re there.

Start your day well
Start your day the moment you wake up. Plan a realistic “pre-work routine” that ensures you get to work as early as possible. Your routine may start the night before.
Your pre-work routine can be continually refined. You may even get to a point where you park your car to face the right way.

Be organised
When you are organised, you find it much easier to prepare yourself and work diligently. If it is important and you have to do it, put it on your to-do list. It doesn’t matter how long you do it for, just do it every day until you get to the point where you know what goes where. Eventually, you will no longer have a messy desk.

Work to limits
According to, writing a to-do list is an essential habit if you want to practise good time management.
Collect all work for one day, for example Monday. As the day goes on, put everything that doesn’t have to be done today in a single “next day” tray.
At the end of Monday, write down each task you have to do the following day. Use an action diary to do this.
Transfer the paper, reports, memos and etc from your “next day” tray to a “today” tray.

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