If you’re navigating declining employee performance, productivity, and retention, have you looked at time management strategies yet?

When workers don’t manage their time well, they take on too much, rush to complete tasks and miss deadlines. They have low energy and morale. 

Plus, although time management is the individual’s responsibility, managers play a significant role in ensuring employees have a manageable workload and support to get priorities done. Without this, workers will burn out and leave the company, negatively impacting retention. 

Time management can transform your team and business. The rest of this article will dive into how and what you can do to give more time back to your employees. 

Man sitting at desk and checking the time (Time management strategies blog)

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The Positive Impact of Efficient Time Management Strategies

Healthy, happy employees are at the core of every successful business. Fortunately, time management is connected to employee health and well-being.

For example, mismanaged time can increase stress. Workers feel like they have so much work to do and not enough time to do it, leading to high stress and a decline in productivity and efficiency. 

Also, while stress can lead to an onset of anxiety, depression, and other mental health challenges, it impacts physical health too with consequences like: 

  • Muscle tension;
  • Frequent migraines;
  • Shortness of breath and rapid breathing; 
  • Pain, bloating, and other gut discomfort;
  • Increased risk for hypertension, heart attack, or stroke.

Working long hours due to inefficient time management will also impact your employees’ oral health

They won’t get as much sleep, which can lead to teeth grinding. They’ll be too tired to keep up with dental visits and an oral hygiene routine. Also, all of that coffee they’re drinking to stay awake stains their teeth and incites bad breath and tooth decay. 

Not only will their oral health improve, but your employees’ overall well-being will get better when time management is a priority. Workers are less stressed, leading to increased happiness and productivity. They’re mentally and physically well enough to bring it each day. 

Improving time management in your business with strategies like goal-setting and leveraging automation, leads to the following as well: 

  • Streamlined operations;
  • Improved work-life balance;
  • Consistently meeting deadlines;
  • Better working relationships; 
  • More time to work on projects that grow your business;
  • Enhanced trust between leaders and lower-level employees.

There’s no denying the positive impact efficient time management can have on your employees and company. 

What can you do to improve time management strategies?

Woman checking her work calendar on desktop (time management strategies blog)
Woman using calendar app on computer in office

With the benefits above in mind, you’re probably wondering what you can do right now to better time management throughout your organization. 

Start with a simple brainstorming session on how you can send employees home earlier without compromising results. 

1. Flexible scheduling 

If employees can go home at a good time every day, they’ll have a chance to carve out a work-life balance that helps them be more productive and happy. They’ll also want to stay at your company longer because of this. 

So, consider flexible scheduling options that allow workers to choose days they work remotely and in the office, and their scheduled hours when appropriate. 

A 4-day workweek is another way to help your employees spend more time at home and on their personal passions. Workers will learn to be more efficient on the days they are working while also getting ample time to relax and engage in their personal lives, improving their performance. 

There are a few other actions you can take to manage time wisely in your organization. 

2. Cut down the unimportant stuff 

If business owners sit down and analyze their team’s day-to-day operations, they’ll come up with at least a few things that aren’t vital to their business and can be cut out or down. Take meetings, for example

If you added up all the hours you’ve spent hosting meetings with your employees that ended up being unnecessary, it would probably be a surprisingly large number. All that time spent on these meetings could’ve been spent somewhere or on something more pressing to the success of your business.  

Cut down meetings and anything else you deem “unimportant” for your team to free up time for them to focus on meaningful work. 

3. Start every day with a clear focus

Many business owners neglect to start their team’s day with a clear focus. Tasks just carry over from the previous day and teams work on those until they’re finally finished. This leads to a stagnant team with low energy. 

Even if you’re focusing on the same thing or something similar as the day before, confirm the focus for the day, every day. It will be much easier for employees to plan their days. It also helps them prioritize tasks when they know what’s most important to get done. 

4. Train employees on time management strategies and techniques 

Passing on information about time management techniques to your employees isn’t enough if you want them to adopt the strategies. Instead, you need to train them on different time management techniques, like time-blocking and the Pomodoro effect. 

Make it a part of the formal training you provide your employees when they’re hired. Then, add to the time management courses as you learn more strategies that your unique team would find beneficial. You can also be proactive during your hiring process and aim to create job descriptions that help you screen for candidates who have effective time management skills. This will also help you retain candidates down the road. That’s because you know that you are hiring the right person for the job the first time. 

It’s also a good idea to regularly revisit your training processes and be sure that your employees have regular updates on what good time management practices are. Creating opportunities for your team members to share what works for them as company processes change and evolve. You can also assess your current workflows to see if there are ways to streamline them and ensure your team is using their time wisely. 

5. Optimizing workflows to improve use of time management strategies

Time management isn’t just about how a team member works and what they prioritize. There’s also the bigger picture of how your company operates as a whole and how everyone handles projects. As technology improves, markets evolve and your team’s makeup changes, it’s important to look at your workflow itself. So, you want to see if you are completing things in the most efficient way possible. 

If you are looking to improve how your company is run, take into account why process improvements can fail. Be sure that your process improvement is as simple as possible and that someone has clear ownership of the new plan to overhaul how you work day in and day out. Getting employees involved in this process can also help ensure that everyone is excited about the new procedures. Here are some different ways that you can look to improve your processes in the workplace. 

6. Make use of digital tools

Technology can be a major benefit to your team members when used correctly. You can determine what the most important tasks are and request that your team members prioritize their workflows to finish those types of projects. Often, these ones require creative thinking, quick pivots, or have high stakes. Other lower-stakes projects could benefit from automation or other streamlining. Often, your employees can complete these when their energy levels are lower. These tasks are also often more repetitive.

For instance, let’s say you are looking to update your career site with job descriptions that will help you attract the best candidates. But, you have a limited amount of time and resources to do so. Instead of crafting each call for candidates separately, you can make use of AI and automation to help you create job descriptions without putting countless hours into doing so. Using technology in this way is also particularly useful if you do not want the final copy to have racial or gender biases. These issues can come into play if a human writes each of the descriptions alone. 

Keep in mind that using technology to improve your time management at work doesn’t have to be complicated. Even using a cloud-sharing app like Google Drive to store important information that everyone needs access to can ensure that no one has to spend time looking for a file. In this example, you could even create a job description template to get started with and take the guesswork out of the process. 

7. Focus on collaboration

Collaboration is an essential part of time management, as having multiple people working on a project can serve you well – if done correctly. An excessive number of team members, or ones that are not sure what their specific duties are, can complicate the process and sometimes cost you time. 

Technology can help by providing you with the collaboration tools needed to help with this process. And that’s whether it is project management software, shared calendars, or cloud-sharing documents. So, each of these can make sure that team members have the correct information when they need it. They can also provide feedback and updates in real-time. 

Your knowledge base should also be shareable and on a platform that encourages collaboration. This allows everyone to have access to information on processes that they may not use regularly. For example, hiring processes may only take effect a few times a year, depending on the size of your company. It also means that you can update your knowledge base as you go. This saves you time in the long run. Having the most up-to-date information on hand means that your team is not making mistakes based on old information. It also means that if you do need to revamp your business processes in the future, you won’t have to start from scratch. 

Why I Wrote This:

After reading this article, it may surprise you how much time management strategies can do for your business. The mental, physical, and emotional health of your employees gets better. This results in improved efficiency, productivity, and engagement. Then, comes achieving broader business goals and creating a thriving, lasting company. Ongig’s mission is to support this by helping you streamline your JD writing process. Request a demo to learn more.

by in HR Content