Five Time Management Tips for the New Year!

2019 has gotten off to an extremely busy start. We’ve received ten new jobs in the last ten days!

I know we all have a lot on our plates and not enough time to do it all. There are no easy answers to finding time when we feel overwhelmed with things to do. However, I do want to offer five Time Management Tips to maximize your limited time so you can get the most important things done.

  1. Accept the fact that on your best days you will only have about two hours of proactive time to initiate and focus on important projects. Start each day with an Action Plan where you identify three action steps you want to take on these projects.
  2. Create Focus Time to get these high value projects accomplished. Aim to block out two 30-minute chunks on your schedule each day so you can be proactive and invest in these important projects, not just react to the urgent ones.
  3. Invest time in learning how to use helpful technology. Most of us have more tech tools available on our desktop than we know how to use. This year Invest Time in Learning things that will save you time. For example, if you do not know how to use the Rules function in Outlook, call your IT department and see if you can schedule some training.
  4. Schedule time throughout the day to re-prioritize. Chances are that what was your top priority at 9:30 a.m. will be overtaken by something even more important by noon. I suggest that you schedule a daily 3 O’Clock Check-Up where you stop to evaluate your day and reassess what must be done before the end of the day or who you need to follow up with to maximize your productivity and results.
  5. In law firms, interruptions are how work is done. Have you noticed that your Director or a Partner will often come to you with new ideas or projects when you are already in the midst of one? We cannot stop interruptions form happening, but we can Stop Interrupting Ourselves. How many times have you been working on a high-value project when all the sudden you’ve thought “I should email that Partner to see how the interview went” or “I should respond to that not particularly urgent email and just get it out of the way?” These self-imposed interruptions prevent us from focusing on the most important projects and are within our control to stop!

We all start each week with the same amount of time: 168 hours. We have more control over how we focus and invest this time than we realize.

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