Time Management Skills

Definition

The term time management skill is used to describe the ability of an individual to self-manage.  These skills include planning, delegating, controlling and organizational talents.

Explanation

Developing time management skills are important to the success of a leader.  While many leaders claim they never waste any time, these same managers become frustrated when they feel a day is unproductive. 

Studies indicate the most common time stealers appear to be:

  • Unclear directions from a leader
  • Interruptions, including meetings
  • Procrastination
  • Miscommunication
  • Inability to refuse work
  • Lack of organizational skills

As would be expected, effective time management requires skills that deflect these time stealers:  planning, organizing, and avoiding interruptions.  Telephone calls and ad hoc meetings are some of the worst offenders in today's work environment.

Time management studies have been conducted for over 100 years, with perhaps the most famous being the Time Motion studies conducted by Lillian and Frank Gilbreth.

Related Terms

stress management skills, interpersonal skills, networking, social skills, effective listening skills