If you feel there are not enough hours in the day, then you need these life hacks for time management.
We can all feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get our job done. However, it is amazing how often we slide into work habits that rob us of our time and productivity. The mining industry in Australia is a dynamic and fast-moving sector, so you need to learn how to work smarter, not harder. Here are some simple hacks to improve your time management.
Create a to-do list and schedule your day
This might seem like an obvious hack, but it’s interesting how many people don’t do it. Creating a to-do list first thing in the morning is an ideal way to organize your tasks and concentrate your mind on the day ahead.
Focus on one task at a time
Far from being useful, multi-tasking is the enemy of productivity. When you are ‘task-hopping’, your attention is divided. It takes longer to achieve anything when you must constantly refocus backwards and forwards between different tasks. Prioritise them instead and immerse yourself in one thing at a time. You’ll get each one done quicker and you’ll be more thorough.
Turn off email notifications
This is one that can worry some people, but it can be extremely helpful. Instead of having email notifications constantly pinging and distracting you from what you’re doing, set certain times aside during the day to check and respond to emails. Most of the time your emails won’t require an immediate response. During your dedicated email times, your aim should be to get your inbox down to zero.
Can someone else do the task? Then delegate it. Sometimes you can use up a lot of precious time doing things that are outside your remit, below your pay grade or more easily handled by another person. If you look at a regular workday, it’s likely you’ll see a number of tasks you shouldn’t be doing and realise your time is better spent elsewhere. Handball it on.
“Tidy desk, tidy mind” is how the saying goes, and it’s true. If you declutter and organise your workspace, you’ll be able to find documents and information quicker and not waste time looking for things. It also sends your brain an unconscious signal that everything is in order and is achievable. A messy, chaotic workspace can make you feel you’re drowning in work, even if you’re not.
Find your peak productivity time
We all have that time of day when we perform at our best. Figure out when yours is — early morning, late afternoon, early evening — and protect this timeframe. Block out your peak productive time and designate it for important tasks and projects that need your full attention. You could block this time out in your calendar or advise colleagues you’re not available for meetings during this time. You’ll get much more achieved by making the best use of it.
Stop for a break
People actually perform better when they take short breaks during the day. This helps you recharge and refocus instead of ploughing through work when you feel uninspired and tired. Take the time to rejuvenate, even if it’s just sitting quietly at your desk for a few minutes or getting outside for a spot of fresh air. Your productivity will soon return.
Keep meetings on target
Unnecessary meetings or ones that run over time are the biggest productivity killers. Before you agree to or organise a meeting, consider if it couldn’t just be done over email. If the meeting does need to take place, set a strict time limit, come prepared with an agenda or consider having a ‘stand-up’ meeting to keep it short. Efficient meetings are great time-savers and sanity savers.
Finding the time
We all feel sometimes that we don’t have enough time in the day or we’ve managed to achieve little at the office. However, employing some of these simple tips will boost your productivity, help you make better use of your precious time and give you a real sense of accomplishment.
If you’d like to put some of these time management hacks into practice, but perhaps in a new role rather than your existing mining job, get in touch with the team at Mining People International