A new manifesto has just been published on time management over at the Change This site.
In essence it recommends forgetting about tips, tricks and gizmos – instead building a really solid understanding of the 7 fundamental practices of time management;
- Capturing – making sure that all calls on your time are captured in a system – not in your brain
- Emptying – making sure that whatever you use to capture calls on your time (e-mail inboxes, in-trays, calendars etc) are regularly emptied – ie the calls on your time are put into a system
- Tossing – getting rid of as much of the demands on your time as possible – being rigorous – but not ruthless in managing your time commitments – saying no!
- Storing – putting useful information in a place where you can safely retrieve it as needed – this does not mean relying on your memory (‘tickler’ files work well here!)
- Acting Now! – doing whatever you can right now – especially if it will only take a few minutes – avoid procrastination. (Get a supply of those little sticky dots of paper and force yourself to put one on each piece of paper you have ‘in the system’ every time you pick it up – you will be amazed at how many get several dots – before you do ANYTHING with them!)
- Scheduling – anything that you can’t do right now must have time scheduled for it – effective scheduling – knowing how long things should take and what contingencies might be appropriate is a fine art – well worth mastering
- Listing – for jobs that need doing – but don’t merit a fixed appointment in the diary then use lists. Have a list for things to do when you are:
- in the office
- at home
- in the car thing (listening to audio books for example),
- in town
- at a clients etc
Picking up the right list at the right time can really help your efficiency.
This manifesto looks like it has been massively influence by Dave Allen’s work on Getting Things Done and will act as a useful reminder to anyone who has been on the PMN Time Management programme.
You can read the full manifesto here.