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Learn A New Approach to Time Management

The articles on this website tell you how to create your Time Edge. The Time Edge is not traditional "Time Management" but a fresh approach that allows you to take control of your life. It is about taking control of your time and how you spend it.....and not allowing other people to spend it for you by pressing their agenda on you. The Time Edge is broken down into the following categories:

The Time Edge
You can't manage time, but you can manage the commitments you make. Learn about the egg timer concept and change the grains in the timer. Don't just allow the grains of sand to slip through the egg timer - change them to represent things that are truly important to you.

Time as a Commitment
"Time Management" is not really about time, but it is about management....and how to  conquer the issues that time presents. Understanding time as a commitment means coming to grips with the choices you make about how you choose to spend your time.

Time Bandits
Everybody’s day gets clogged up with things that they shouldn’t be handling that (all too effectively) steal their time. Identifying and eliminating these "Time Bandits" is one of the first and most important steps in changing and improving the time accountability dynamic.

Time as a Commitment
Learn how to become accountable for your time by changing the things you allow into your day. Identify the things that you have in your day that you shouldn't be doing yourself....and figure out how to eliminate them.

Time Execution
When you take control of your day, eliminate Time Bandits and practice Time Accountability,  to maximize the gain you need to adopt a time management system that works for you. There are a number of different options .... you have to pick one and implement it.

Organizational Time
The final step is driving Time Accountability through the organization. If executives find this  difficult, employees will have even more trouble gaining control. Assuming that they will be able to do so is a leap of faith that is, at best, optimistic and at worst downright foolhardy.

 

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My Biggest Time Management Issue Is:
 

Time Management Tips

  • When somebody interrupts you when you are busy, don't let them interrupt your train of thought. Ask them to come back and see you at a specific time – you may be surprised that they actually figure out the answer and don't come back to ask you.

  • Everybody has about three hours during the day when they are at their best. Figure out what your "Prime Time" is and then plan your day around it. Make sure that you dedicate that time to focus without interruptions on the activities that are of most value to you.

  • It is all too easy to waste time on phone calls. Keep an egg timer next to the phone to keep track of exactly how long you are talking. It will keep the time you are spending in the forefront of your mind and will help you handle the call more efficiently.

  • Never go to the bank to deposit checks, it is a Time Bandit way below your pay grade, and claiming it is therapeutic and gets you out of the office is deluding yourself. Send somebody else!  Better still, get a check scanning machine...and make sure the bank pays!

  • Organize your office so the door isn't in your immediate line of vision. The big payoff is that people can't appear at your door, hover, catch your eye and distract you. If you make it harder to interrupt you, people may figure out answers themselves rather than asking you.

  • When you have to give out an e-mail address to somebody who's going to send you things you don't want in your inbox, give them a special "junk" e-mail address. Then set up a rule so that everything to that address goes to a folder you review on your timetable.

  • When somebody interrupts you to ask you a question always reply with a question back. Ask them how they would deal with it, and make them think proactively rather than just relying on you. A good technique is to ask: "If I wasn't available today, what would you do?"

  • If your key customers expect you to answer the phone at all times, get an Internet phone line and give them a "VIP" phone number to call. Set it up with a unique ring on your system and you'll know that calls on that line are from your most important customers.

  • Most people have a “To Do” list to record the tasks they need to "Get Done", but it doesn't help identify what you shouldn't do yourself. For that you need a “To Don’t” list. Identify the culprits, put them on the list and defend your time by assigning them elsewhere. 

  • E-mails have overtaken the phone now as the most dangerously effective of all Time Bandits. Turn off your e mail alert and check your e-mail only four times a day....do it on your schedule not the schedule of the people who are interrupting your more productive work.

  • E-mails have overtaken the phone as the most dangerously effective of all time wasters. The worst thing is the e mail alert that pops up on your computer screen. Don't let other people interrupt you in this way and take back control of your time by turning the alert off

  • When somebody interrupts you while sitting at your desk, stand up. It changes the pace of the interaction and sends a message to the interrupter that they have invaded your time. The more you can send this message, the more effective you will become at protecting your time.

  • When somebody comes to you with an issue they should figure out themselves, don't allow yourself to relieve them of the burden and take it on yourself. Instead of saying "leave it with me" when this happens, say "never delegate upwards" and ask them for their solution.

  • Entrepreneurs wear so many of the hats in their business that many of the tasks they carry out are at a level way below the real value of their time. Are you working below your pay grade by not handing off menial tasks that should be done by others?

  • When you are hiring new employees, ask candidates about their time management abilities. The best employees are those that can prioritize their work and handle interruptions, so be sure to ask relevant questions to probe in those areas so that you hire somebody who has those skills.


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Did you know ?

Most people have a “To Do” list to record the tasks they need to "Get Done", but it doesn't help identify what you shouldn't do yourself. For that you need a “To Don’t” list. Identify the culprits, put them on the list and defend your time by assigning them elsewhere.