Continuing our series on successful people this time we are looking at the importance of time management.
There are two important reasons for practising time management.
Not only is it important to create a structure to the day that makes it possible to define what needs to be done but also it enables tasks to be prioritised so that the most important are the first to be dealt with.
Time management, using lists and a diary, makes it possible to review the task list, to allocate time and in particular to reschedule the less important from the most urgent along the way.
A second important reason to practise time management is to build in the necessary free space for taking regular breaks from the desk and the phone and for research, personal development and creative thinking.
It is neither mentally nor physically healthy to remain sitting at a desk all day without taking regular breaks to at least stand up and walk around the office for a few minutes.
Pausing to think, visualise what success will look like and to then plot the steps needed to get there is one of the things that distinguishes successful people from those who are competent at their job.
Too many business managers feel obliged to multi-task especially earlier in the day when they feel freshest, but research conducted at Stanford University has found that multi-tasking is less productive than doing one thing at a time and fully concentrating on it.
The danger with multi-tasking and not managing time becomes more apparent when things start to go wrong in a business. Then the failure to prioritise and build in thinking time will show up as stress and an inability to make the right decisions necessary to deal with a crisis.