Upon looking for inspiration on time management, the folks at Hubstaff sought out a productivity expert for some tips. Today’s post provides readers with lots of great information on the subject, so if you’re in need of some advice definitely tune in!
AccelaWork’s very own Robby Slaughter was delighted to share his perspective on time management with Susan Young and her Hubstaff readers. After all, his passion for productivity in business is extensive–publishing several books on the matter and engaging in countless presentations that educate and inspire businesses and employees on the benefits of becoming an efficient professional.
Below is an overview of Young’s and Slaughter’s discussion on time management, time tracking and productivity. We’ve highlighted the meat of their conversation, but if you’d like to read the interview in full be sure to visit the Hubstaff blog today.
Q. What do you feel is the biggest time management issue that businesses face today?
Slaughter: Lack of respect. The single most effective technique for better managing your own time is to better respect everyone’s time—not just yours. You’ll teach others how you want to be treated.
Q. Do you think time management is better today than it has been in years’ past?
Slaughter: Today, we’re saddled with more distractions and interruptions than ever before. . . But mostly it’s due to an instant-answer culture which values getting information faster rather than getting it right.
Q. What are some common mistakes people are making with their time management?
Slaughter: Too many people confuse being responsive with being available. Employees are tacitly expected to respond instantly to emails and phone calls—even after hours—thus preventing them from recharging . . .
Q. What resources (software apps, processes, books) do you recommend for better time management?
Slaughter: . . . a judiciously-maintained personal calendar, and aggressively detailed to-do list, and an additional screen for your computer.
Q. How can companies better manage employees and encourage productivity?
Slaughter: Freedom. The best way to encourage productivity is to encourage individuals to take ownership over how they manage their own time and resources.
Q. How do you feel about employee time tracking (and/or time tracking in general) as it relates to productivity?
Slaughter: Largely speaking, time tracking is counterproductive. If we measure or charge by the hour, we incentivize working more slowly. After all, why get work done faster if you still have to keep working? It can be valuable to track time for resource planning and scheduling, but just like watched pot never boils, a closely monitored employee will be more worried about screwing up than getting things done.
Q. How do you approach business improvement at Accelawork?
Slaughter: We listen. The best way to consult on making a business better is to let people tell you what they think is working and not working. And then, we observe. The way you say you operate is often quite different than how you truly function. Finally, we coach and advise. Change requires ownership. No suggestion will be earnestly followed unless people believe they are part of the process.
Like anything, creating an avenue for time management is a process that should always be evolving to accommodate what you need. Being and staying productive means that change, no matter how subtle, is necessary. So don’t be afraid of altering certain routines. Be vigilant when it comes to understanding your workflow and your environment. And keep in mind: if and when a process begins to lag, it’s time to reevaluate, rediscover and redefine how you can navigate through it better and more efficiently!