A practical guide to efficiently prioritizing your time, enabling you to achieve optimum results.
The reality of today’s world is that we have to achieve great results with less time. We are constantly juggling time with quality and cost, and trying to do so in a rapidly changing environment. With the ultimate goal of uncompromised results, it is critical that we plan, set priorities, and act quickly and decisively, all of which require unparalleled time management.
“ Time is the scarcest resource of managers. If it is not managed, nothing else can be managed.” —Peter Drucker
Time flies when you’re having fun, or not. The key is to optimize your time, both professionally and personally, in a manner that will yield the most ideal results. Following is a brief guide designed to help you prioritize tasks and work efficiently.
1. Record Planned Activities
Make a list of everything that you must accomplish for the day and/or week in order to achieve optimum results.
2. Determine Primary Goals
List your primary goals for the day or the week
3. Consider the 80/20 Rule
Determine which 20% of activities will yield 80% the results, bringing you closest to your goals.
4. Evaluate Important vs. Urgent
Determine which activities are important, and which are imperative, or even urgent. Consider how certain tasks affect others, and the consequences for failing to complete them
Use a ranking system to begin planning: “A” tasks have high priority and must be completed immediately “B” tasks are moderately important but can be done after the “A” tasks “ C” tasks are of low-level importance and can be tackled in your spare time
6. Create a Schedule
Establish deadlines for each task and estimate the time required to complete each task. Create a schedule and look for opportunities to multitask. For example, can you couple something of lesser priority with something of greater importance?
7. Re-evaluate Goals and Adjust
Review your goal(s), envision the finish line and adjust your plan.
Eliminate those tasks on your list that remain at the bottom and realistically will never get done.