Time Management Techniques For Work From Home Success

by WorkFromHome on September 15, 2011

Time management grants your wish for more hours in your day. Utilize a plan, organize your day, and schedule your calendar to finish more projects, meet your family’s needs, and make more money while working from home. Follow a few simple guidelines to maximize your time for efficiency, productivity, and success.

Determine Your Most Productive Time Of Day To Work

If you jump out of bed with energy and ideas, you may find morning hours to be most productive. Those who exhibit the most energy and creativity later in the day benefit from afternoon or evening office hours. There may be days you have no choice but to work during non-peak hours. However, as a rule, schedule your most vigorous or creative tasks for your peak performance hours.

Schedule Work And Family Responsibilities Into Your Daily Routine

Living without a plan forces you to rely on memory when scheduling client meetings or family outings. Your family and income suffer. For work from home success, utilize a calendar. Plan weekly sessions with your spouse and children to record family activities to ensure you do not miss important games or early school dismissals. If you do not employ childcare, schedule office hours around your children’s school or nap schedule to ensure their needs are met. Remember to include errands, doctor’s appointments, meal preparation, and cleaning.

Utilize A Personal Calendar

You keep a large calendar in your office, but a pocket-sized calendar fits in your purse or briefcase for times when you are not at home. This tool prevents missed appointments or double bookings and allows you to record work deadlines and family obligations for quick access when you step away from your office.

Prepare Ahead Of Time

Every night, prepare for the next day by clearing off your desk, emptying your email inbox, packing lunches for your children, laying out clothing, and preparing the coffeepot. These few minutes of preparation allow mornings to run more smoothly, and you begin your day with less stress.

Use A Timer To Keep Your Schedule On Track

If you have an hour to work, set your timer to 60 minutes and finish as much as you can until the timer beeps. You may not wish to schedule your day around a timer, but this time management tool allows you to set boundaries for phone calls, internet time, or projects and maximizes productivity within short and long time increments.

Stay Organized With Lists

Whether you write lists for phone calls to return, office supplies to purchases, or groceries to buy, lists serve as personal assistants. Keep a notebook and pen handy wherever you go, and track your to-do needs in writing.

Set Realistic Project Deadlines

Visibly post project deadlines in ink on your office calendar. Break each project into smaller, manageable tasks with deadlines also posted on the calendar. With ease, you see what tasks must be done each day to reach the deadline and how much time remains to complete each project. Completing projects on time allows you to schedule multiple projects, complete each project with client satisfaction, and receive payment on time.

Avoid Procrastination

The frustrating client or difficult project continues to weigh on you until you handle it. Manage your time by dealing with difficulties and unpleasant tasks immediately. Waiting only prolongs the challenge and occupies your mind when you could be solving problems and making money.

Save Time Online

The internet provides numerous opportunities to waste time. Checking e-mail and social networking sites throughout the day interrupt work time. To save time online, set a timer for a short amount of time. Try to beat the clock and finish your online activities within that time. Additionally, block game sites, vow to finish your work before checking social sites, and decide which sites you will visit before you log on.

Take Advantage Of Waiting Opportunities

Carry your notebook and pen at all times to jot ideas or write memos while you wait in line at the post office, wait to pick up your children after school, or wait for appointments. You can also use wait times to return phone calls, access email, or relax.

Make Time For Yourself

Even the busiest people make time each day for a healthy diet, regular exercise, enjoyable hobbies, and friendship connections. You must complete your work projects and care for you family, of course; but neglecting yourself leads to lower productivity, illness, or depression.

With careful planning, detailed organization, and full commitment, you find more time in your day to accomplish work and family projects. Any successful work at home job benefits from time management tools such as a calendar, notebook, pen, and timer. Utilize these and other techniques for a productive, satisfying experience working from home.

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