You can’t get into work any earlier or stay even later. Your only option is to get more efficient with the time you have. To reclaim time in your schedule and get more done in the day, here are four time-saving travel management hacks that will leave you free to focus on the important stuff.
1. Timeboxing – Block out time in your calendar for specific tasks
This works by setting a specific amount of time to do one task, such as finish a report. Block it out in your calendar, like you would with a meeting. This will stop you getting doubled booked and make you more likely to start your task on time.
If possible, leave your desk so nobody can disturb you. Close everything down to stop any interruptions, including email. At the end of your time stop work, even if you’ve not finished the task you’re working on. You can always book another timeboxing session to get it finished.
Over time this hack will help you get more done in the set time period.
2. Scrap your to-do list and replace it with a work-day schedule
Instead of having a massive to-do list, which will never get finished, write a work-day schedule which allocates a set time for each task you need to do.
This hack forces you to be much more realistic about what you’re going to get done, as you’ll need to set the time you’ll spend on each task. It helps overcome what’s known as Planning Fallacy, where people repeatedly underestimate how long it will take to finish a task. So, no more trying to analyse quarterly spend against budget, reconcile the data from the New York office and handle calls from your Travel Management Company at the same time!
It’ll save you time by stopping you from worrying about the unimportant tasks clogging up your to-do list.
3. Track your time to see how you’ve really spent your day
Ever got home after a long day in the office and find you’re unsure about what you’ve achieved?
Logging your time can make a difference here. It’ll give you a complete record of everything you’ve done, like all the little tasks that help push a big project forward.
Time tracking will also show you what the major time stealers are in your day. If it makes sense, you can then outsource these to your TMC to give you more time to focus on what’s important.
Time tracking apps like Toggl can make this easy, as you just need to enter the task you’ve worked on the time you’ve spent.
4. Make verbal commitments – they’re much harder break
It easy to break a promise to yourself. It’s much harder to break your word to other people. Guilt gets to us and we feel compelled to get the job done.
Telling a colleague that you’re going to get a job done by a deadline gives you the impetus to get it done. Even if someone else isn’t depending on you for a particular task, making a promise to them means you’re more likely to finish it.
How does this help save time? In short, it stops you procrastinating and makes you focus on the task in hand.