Your time is your only resource. Here’s our latest list of the biggest time saving tips of the year for lifelong learning professionals.
Instead of getting up and walking around, e-mail information to those in the office, and outside of the office. Stop copying/Xeroxing, collating, and distributing hard copies of reports,
memos and information.
Reorganize your computer files
Your computer files are a mess. And they probably are organized by date or month instead of by project. Reorganize your computer files so you can get to them quicker.
E-mail or IM instead of calling
Using e-mail or instant messaging (IM) saves time, and is often more accurate for communicating information. Phone calls, including cell phone calls, take more time because they inherently include pleasantries and non-work related conversation.
Reduce your paper files
Set a goal to reduce your paper files by 50% by the end of the year. Then create electronic files on your computer and replace as many paper files as you can. You won’t eliminate paper
files soon. But if you can cut them in half, you save tons of time.
Recognize, and ignore, those exceptional circumstances that happen infrequently and have a low dollar implication. The occasional refund, the person who did not show up for class, the request for post-it notes, providing change when the vending machine isn’t working.
Quickly dispatch these items, usually by giving the person affected whatever
she or he is requesting. These are exceptions. They take up huge amounts of time when staff try to deal with exceptions as if they are important items.
No decisions under $100
Delegate any decision that involves less than $100 (refunds, discounts, purchasing, etc.) to someone else. Don’t make any decisions under $100. It “costs” your organization more than $100 for you to make these cheap unimportant decisions. You won’t be able to make thousands of dollars for your program if you are interrupted with nickel and dime decisions.
Biggest time waster
Spend five minutes to figure out the biggest time waster in your day. Then spend whatever time it takes to develop a solution to reduce, or preferably eliminate, that single biggest time waster.
Most important activity Spend five minutes to figure out the most important activity of any given week. Then spend more time on the most important activity. Your most important activity yields income, saves costs, or improves your organization in some very important way. If you spend more time on it, it will pay you back with big dividends.
Reduce meeting time
“Just Say No” to most meetings. Select the 1-3 meetings in a given week that are the best use of your time. Say “no” to all the other meetings, including meetings with just one other person. If you ever have a meeting to plan another meeting, that is a red warning light that things have gone very awry.