I give presentations on organizational skill building as it relates to paper, time, and computer file management. It seems that we all have too much paper, not enough time, and more than enough information stored in our computers if we could just find it!
Part of my job is to help identify the challenges an employee or organization is facing and suggest solutions. Over the course of time I have found that most individuals are simply unaware of the basics of paper and time management. It's not necessary to know all existing time management theories, but it is important to know the basics.
Appointment books and calendars are two tools that help guide you through your activities and commitments. Here are three basic steps you can take to use these tools more effectively.
Select a user-friendly appointment book
The selection of a type of appointment book and calendar is usually a matter of personal preference. Appointment books or planners come in several different formats and vary in size vary from ones that fit in a pocket to ones that fit in a briefcase. If you use electronics to manage your time that's great. If it's not your style, refrain from buying expensive handheld devices. You'll save time and money by being honest with yourself.
Maintain one and only one appointment book
I frequently find clients trying to maintain multiple appointment books or using scraps of paper as their time management tool. The result is double and triple bookings or completely missed appointments. Using one appointment book will cut down on conflicts and create a less-anxious environment. You can store calendars in several places, but maintain only one appointment book.
Take your appointment book with you?always
Most of us rarely leave the house without our keys and wallet. But I find many people who leave their appointment book behind. When this happens, appointments and commitments are made on whatever is available including napkins and a variety of other things that become misplaced or lost. This not only results in a precious loss of time but is unproductive and stressful as well.
Be prepared and less stressed by sticking to these basic tools and steps when building your time management skills.
Copyright 2005 Cynthia Kyriazis. All rights reserved.
Cynthia Kyriazis is an organizing and time management consultant, trainer, speaker, coach and author with over 20 years management experience in multi-unit corporations. Organize it, a division of Productivity Partners, Inc. is an organizational training firm she founded in 1995 and has been serving Fortune 500 clients ever since. Cynthia works with business and their employees to help improve performance and realize productivity gains.
Cynthia has appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Kansas City Star and the Legal Intelligencer. She currently serves as Secretary on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), member of the National Speakers Association (NSA), member of the Kansas City of the International Society for Performance Improvement ? (ISPI-KC) and consultant to the American Coaching Association.