“Timed Productivity” – Steps to Achieve Effective Time Management, Thursday, 12 Nov 2020

Most of us understand the broad principles of effective time management, and can see that it is important to manage our time as thoughtfully as possible. The difficult part for busy professionals is actually applying time management techniques on a regular basis.

Here are practical, easy to apply techniques that will help. Once the initial, analytical stage is completed, the techniques outlined here are simple ones that can be applied on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, as a matter of routine.

Preparation Week: the first step is the most time consuming one: analyzing your current situation. To establish in what condition your management of time is at this moment, you will need to complete at least a week, perhaps two, of preparation. You will also need to make note of any activities that fall on a monthly basis, such as team meetings, or budget performance reviews.

Recording Your Activity: for one week at least, on a daily basis, you will need to keep a detailed record, diary, or time log [if you need one – email me], of what activities you are involved in, and how long you spend on each of these. Be as detailed as you can, so that you can analyze your activities in depth. The experts in the time management field recommend that you split your day into at least 15 minute periods, and for very busy periods even smaller time periods of 5 or 10 minutes. For example, for that first 30 minutes after starting work in the morning, don’t just write down 8.30 to 9.00 Started work, opened emails, talked to colleagues, you need to break this down into at least three x 10 minute periods. If you have chosen an unusual week, for example when you are absent from the usual routine, on a training course, complete the log for the missing days, the following week. Be disciplined about this. Use a notebook, or diary, or prepare a paper or pc based time-sheet for each day. Take this with you everywhere, or at the very least, complete it every time that you return to your personal work area. If it will help you, get the support of your colleagues, and ask them to remind you that you should be recording your activities diligently.

Analyzing Your Activity: at the end of this period you will need to carefully analyze these records. The primary aim is to identify negative activities and events. These will include activities that you shouldn’t be involved in, or could delegate, activities that you are spending too long on, activities that are unproductive, and events which are disruptive or unproductive. Some of the activities that you identify here will be unique to your situation, but some will be common to most professionals, such as being inappropriately interrupted by colleagues, by telephone calls aimed at others, by attending meetings which are not relevant to you, by surfing on the internet, by focusing on low-priority tasks instead of more important, but more difficult, ones. However, it is also important to identify the positive activities and events, so that you can consider how appropriate is the time that you are currently allocating to these. Examples could be how much time you are spending in supporting, or coaching, your team members, or how much time you are giving to the building and maintaining of relationships with others, or how much time you are spending on addressing quality management issues. With a clear picture of how you are spending your time, you can then move on to the next step.

Talk with Stakeholders: these are the colleagues, the teams, the managers, perhaps suppliers, perhaps customers, who have a legitimate interest in how you perform at work and who will be affected by the changes that you will be making. You may also need to arrange discussion with key individuals, before you take the next few steps that follow.

Listing Your Responsibilities: separately from the recording activity, you should make time to review your job description, yourself if it is current and up to date, with your line manager if it is in need of a formal review. The purpose of this is to clarify what your role is and what are your formal responsibilities. It is often the case that, because of poor time management and the problems that this creates, role and responsibilities are allowed to drift, to the point where the individual is not carrying out the activities that they are meant to. A clear picture of what the role and responsibilities actually is an essential part of building a strong foundation on which to plan your new approach to managing your time.

Listing Your Goals: this is another essential part of building that foundation as a professional, a manager or specialist, you will have corporate level and operational level goals which your activity is meant to contribute to and help achieve. In parallel, you will have personal work performance and personal development goals that you should be working towards. Identifying and reviewing these will enable you to clarify them and take them into consideration when you plan the changes that you will be making.

Eliminating or Reducing Unnecessary Activities: with the information that you have collected and considered, it is now time to take some action. In simple terms this means identifying those activities, events, and periods of time, that are not contributing to you fulfilling your role and your responsibilities, and not helping you to contribute to the achievement of the corporate and operational goals nor your own personal goals. In your action plans, and your daily, weekly, monthly, lists (that we discuss below) you can then ensure that you do not continue wasting time and effort on any of these negative, unproductive, activities.

Prioritizing Activities: you may need to talk with your team, and-or with your line manager, possibly with internal or external suppliers and customers, to clarify and confirm what your priorities should be. This could be an opportunity to discuss how you could delegate some tasks to others, perhaps simply because you should not be doing them in the first place, perhaps as a developmental activity to help a team member learn new skills. The aim is to have a clear picture of which are the high, medium, and low priority tasks and events. You can then allocate an appropriate time of day, week, or month, to work on these, and an appropriate time period that ensures that you will be able to complete these successfully.

Preparing Action Lists: sometimes called To Do lists. This is a relatively simple activity, where you look at the tasks and events of the coming day, week, and month, and list the activities that you intend to carry out, and when and for how long you will work on them. You will, of course, need to continually check that these activities match up with your role, responsibilities, and goals.

Starting Each New Day: in reality, this can mean taking action at the end of the previous day, your last task of the day being to plan your specific activities, perhaps as a simple actions or to-do list, with times, perhaps as a list of priorities, that you intend to complete on the following day. Then, on starting work the next day you will have an action plan waiting for you. As the day proceeds, you should review your progress at intervals, and make adjustments where necessary. Then, at the end of the day, draw up the action plan, the list, for the next day.

Building in Break Times: don’t fall into the trap of trying to work continuously, all day without stopping, working through all your breaks, and worse, not taking a lunch break. Overwhelming evidence shows that we need to have breaks, and that without them our performance deteriorates dramatically the longer we go without. You should take at least one short break mid-morning, a minimum of 30 minutes at lunchtime, and a short break in the afternoon. Your organization should encourage you to take these breaks, as it is required by health and safety at work legislation.

Starting Each New Week: try to adopt the same approach as with daily planning. At the end of the last day of your working week, draw up an action plan for the next week, or at least for the first day in detail and the rest of the week in outline. Starting Each New Month: again, adopt the same approach as with weekly planning. During the last week of the calendar of budgetary month, prepare your action plan for the following month.

Strategic Planning: in parallel with the daily, weekly, and monthly planning, you should also have background plan that focuses on medium term and long term objectives. These can be workplace performance targets, such as end of year financial results, but should also include softer, but equally important targets, such as the development of individuals and teams (not forgetting your own, personal, development objectives). They can also include targets such as the improvement of working conditions, or relationships, for example between departments or with suppliers. These longer term plans should be referred to and progress reviewed, on at least a monthly basis.

In summary: without a structured approach to managing your time it is inevitable that you will run into difficulties, miss important deadlines, not give enough attention to your career and personal development, not deal fully with the needs of your team members, allow others to dictate how you spend your time at work. The result is that work will become a burden, and your performance will deteriorate. In addition, others will notice and your performance will be judged negatively. By following the simple, practical, steps outlined here, you will take control of the time you spend at work, and take control of the activities that you carry out. Once you have consistently applied these techniques for a month or two, they will become habit, absorbed seamlessly into your daily work life. You will find that you have less conflict, fewer problems, and you will meet most of your deadlines and targets. You will be managing your time effectively.

Gloria-Jean Brown

https://CoachingbyGJ.com gloriajean@coachingbyGJ.com

“Timed Productivity” – Productive Space and a Bonus, Thursday, 5 Nov 2020

Design your space to be productive and functional for YOU!!!

Feng Shui is more than just rearranging furniture, it’s a lifestyle. Lifestyles involve mindsets or concepts that are prevalent.

Nonetheless, it is still a point of view that among other things, requires careful consideration and thought. So what are the thoughts that prevail on the onset of Feng Shui?

Sense of Balance

The number one thing that Feng Shui promotes is balance. This balance comes in many forms, in the color arrangement, in the spatial factors up to the numbers that concern your working space or environment. The balance is more promoted by the five Earth elements of Feng Shui. The standards of Feng Shui are made customized in every person, but it all boils down to having the right sets of things that complement and balance each other out.

Sense of Positivity

Positive energy is the thing most sought after by people who try to get the services of Feng Shui consultants. This positivism needs to be maintained. Conversely, it wards off all the forms of negative energy that may come in a given space.

A Natural Inclination for Beauty and the things that Promote It

Beauty in symmetry and symmetry in beauty is one of the core concepts of Feng Shui. It appeals to the physically inviting and also adheres to fighting for beauty and balance in things. Feng Shui, in some ways, is a celebration of beauty in design and other physical elements of the space being designed.

Love for Your Environment

Good Feng Shui respects the elements of the earth and makes the enthusiast more mindful of their surroundings.

Love for Self

Love for self involves not subjecting yourself to oppressive places or harboring negative energies that can be counter-productive to your different activities.

Dreaming big and making the environment jive with that dream

When you have a dream and you intend to fulfill it in numerous ways, the best way to start is to have an environment that embraces those dreams.

BONUSWhen something is causing you a challenge; on the 3rd episode …. STOP and analyze how this ‘problem’ can be solved/minimized. Stop letting it derail you and your goals!!

Gloria-Jean Brown

 https://CoachingbygJ.com gloriajean@coachingbygj.com

“Timed Productivity” – Have Your Resources? ~ Thursday, 29 October 2020

Hi – I am technically on vacation this week. So, I will be short and sweet.

First, Do you have your copy? Need a gift for the Holidays? Visit my website to order

Second, visit my resources page; check out Stash Investing (new addition).

Third, please put on your mask; hand sanitizer in your pocket; follow social distancing; and, go VOTE!!!

It is not too late … but close – to sign up for year-end short term coaching [3 months].

You can always schedule a free, 15-minute consult call – have time management concern or need to run something past me?

Have a great week and “see” you in November!!

Gloria-Jean

gloriajean@coachingbygj.com https://Coachingbygj.com

“Timed Productivity” – ‘Time Tune-up {80/20}’, Thursday, 8 October 2020

We are moving along; coming up on mid-October. Will share some Time Management pointers in this edition.

ID your best energy-time. When you are ‘in the zone’ – stay with as long as you can. When you are not – – work on other tasks (low level) that will contribute to your goal’s achievement. It is helpful to realize that we all go through cycles. When you can identify your personal highs and lows – you can better distribute your workload. You can be ‘on point’ when you really need to be.

Time management is an efficient tool for performing the tasks within a given time limit. In this context, Vilfredo Pareto found a law i.e., 80-20 law.

The law can find its roots in the year 1906. Pareto was working on finding an explanation of the economic disparities in the world. His theory had many takers and backed by various experts of that era.

This 80-20 rule lays the emphasis on the lesser of anything. It says that the greater of anything is the least important. As his findings state that there is a small group (20%) who owns a major share (80%) of the world’s wealth. As per the law, the most significant are less in quantity. And what is in ample amount is the most insignificant. This law of time and energy management can be applied in day-to-day life also. The understated points have to be taken into account:

1) Avoiding Useless Tasks:

The most important part of management is to avoid tasks that take a toll of time. This would not hamper him/her to concentrate on the most sort-after activities.

2) Foresight:

While planning, the tasks must be selected diligently so as to ensure secure future returns. As today’s solutions have a definite impact on tomorrow’s outcome.

3) Keep an Eye on Highly Valued Task:

The overall efforts must be streamlined in order to concentrate on the most important 20%. If one works in this way over a period of time, the outcome would be beneficial.

Time management works on this 80-20 principle. This, in the long run, ensures the efforts and time are consumed rightly working on the most important 20%. If this aspect is taken care of wisely, the efforts would definitely prove fruitful.

Gloria-Jean Brown

 https://CoachingbyGJ.com gloriajean@coachingbygj.com

“Timed Productivity” – ‘Self-Improvement Primer’, Thursday, 1 October 2020

It is time to get ready to enter 2021 strong! It is 1 October, in 92 days – 2021 will be here. We have lived a lifetime in the past 6 months!! But we must move forward. I am going to share some pointers to help you get started.
Self-improvement: improvement of one’s condition through one’s own efforts.
I often see myself as somewhat contented with my life the way things are, but of course, it’s hard to think of anything else when there are real issues to be discussed.
Still, I aspire for something deeper and more meaningful.
We’re all pelted with problems. Honestly, it shouldn’t even bother or even hinder us from becoming all we ought to be. Aspirations as kids should continue to live within.
To keep this writing concise, I am going to leave you with 9 questions to ask yourself – honestly.
What do I really want?
Should I really change?
What’s the bright side in all of this?
Am I comfortable with what I’m doing?
Have I done enough for myself?
Am I happy where I am today?
How much could I have?
What motivates me?
What really makes me tick?

So? What really makes you tick? You can be just about anything you always wanted to be, but to realize that attaining something that may seem very difficult is already giving up before you even start that journey. Always remember, that self-improvement is not just about the physical or philosophical change you have to undergo, but it’s something that you really want.
9 simple questions to ask yourself. Do you want to improve? I am available to assist you with targeted coaching – through your personalized behavior style assessment.
Your CTA (call to action) is to email me – if you are interested.
Gloria-Jean Brown https://CoachingbyGJ.com gloriajean@coachingbygj.com

“Timed Productivity” – ‘3 and Done’, Thursday, 24 Sep 2020

Happy Autumn!

Yes – stop procrastinating. Do something to take tasks out of your head and complete them!

1/Make a list.

2/Prioritize that list

3/DO the top 3 things.

Repeat … every day.

I have 3 coaching slots left for {Oct-Dec} for your 2021 preparedness. If you are 1 ~ email me or call for a consult, if you have questions – – – now.

Gloria-Jean Brown  https://CoachingbyGJ.com

“Timed Productivity” – ‘Clean Your Brain’, Thursday, 17 Sep 2020

Yes – clean your brain! Perfect time as Autumn makes its debut on Tuesday.

Sit down and have a brainstorming session yourself. Review what tasks present obstacles for you. Could be – there are certain situations. Family members – spouse or children. A particular client or manager. The point of this brainstorming session is to come up with workable solutions you can use to stop ‘going down the rabbit hole’ when things go askew. Know of ways to lessen the effects on you.

Another suggestion is to set a reminder in your phone for the very important things you need to remember. Use colorful or pattern post-it-notes if you want a visual reminder to stand out.

And if you still have time – make a list of all the things that you need to get in order for the end of the year; set new guidelines; see what is no longer ‘important’ and drop it. Start thinking of what you want to accomplish in 2021. What do you need to get started with – now?

Please visit my website for information on coaching, other blog posts, and my resources page. Check the tabs at the top.

Click here to schedule a 15-minute consult call.

Gloria-Jean Brown

gloriajean@coachingbygj.com

“Timed Productivity” – ‘You Do Have Time’, Thursday, 3 Sep 2020

Have a little assignment for you. Google ‘wheel of life’. It is a free download. Complete the wheel for yourself. How smooth is your wheel?

You may actually have anywhere from 15 (low) to 25 (high) hours a week that are not involved in sleeping, commuting, job, family, cleaning/chores, and church/charity.

What do you really want to do with your ‘free’ time?

​With a good understanding of your plan, by you – you can be more focused in what you intend to accomplish. It is not your lack of time but rather your execution of the time within your day.

eisenhower-box.jpg

What you Do, Decide, Delegate and Delete is the key {look at the Eisenhower box}. The time you spend multiplied by your ‘focused’ intensity is how you can conquer your day and accomplished your goals.

GLORIA-JEAN

gloriajean@coachingbyGJ.com https://CoachingbyGJ.com

Schedule a consult call: click HERE

“Timed Productivity” -~ ‘What Can I Do for YOU?’, Thursday, 10 Sep 2020

Yippee!! – It is September!!! Cooler weather is coming and should stay.

1. What information can I provide for you? Email me any topics you would like to see. Or, ask questions for which you need answers. (gloriajean@coachingbyGJ.com)

2. Are YOU taking advantage of my resource page. There are different savings entities there!! Click on ‘resource’ above. Yes, I do use these businesses or services.

Quick tips:

a. Break tasks into small, doable pieces; even on days when you feel like crawling back under the bed. Do a ‘tiny’ something. Then, do another ‘tiny’ something. Some accomplishment is better than none.

b. If feeling overwhelm – ask for help and advice. Someone you know has wisdom to impart to you. Reach out.

c. Look for ways to simply your life and your family – that works for you and your situation.

Gloria-Jean

To schedule a 15-minute consult call, click —> HERE

Website, Blog posts and Coaching information – click –> here

“Timed Productivity” – ‘Let’s Work It’ – Thursday, 27 August 2020

Last Thursday in August 2020 – next weekend Labor Day weekend [beaches, school, still in hurricane season].

Let’s give our productivity a work out-shall we:

  • Review what you need to do and make a plan. Leave a little leeway for the unexpected. Build in some ‘me time’, also.
  • Do you have your designated work area? Do your children have a designated online school area – preferably not their bedroom. They need to experience ‘going to another place’ for schooling. {if at all possible}.
  • Determine your best energy time and use that time/space to your advantage.
  • Try time blocking or the Pomodoro method to focus on your most important tasks. Teach this to your children also. Example: set an AM and PM Time Block (20 minutes) to check email {10:10-10:30; and 3:40-4:00}. If you can, have one day for meetings; or, 2 mornings or afternoons { Tues / Thurs }; so you can have a better work ‘work flow’?
  • Do something each day to brighten your spirit. Open your windows; let the sunlight in; put on some light music; add flowers or a plant. Make plans for a weekend excursion.

GLORIA-JEAN BROWN

gloriajean@coachingbyGJ.comhttps://CoachingbyGJ.com

to schedule a consult call – -> click here