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Time Management: For Trainers


alarm clock
Training consultant Rich Lucas outlines four ways to effectively organise your tasks to produce efficient, effective results.

Time management is a funny thing - its basis in "to do” lists and the world
and its friend claiming to have the greatest time management tool available
and claim to make you work smarter, not harder.

The only problem is that not many of them have any practical worth, as we use them for one week and then discard them. It seems to be fashionable to always be busy. Is this a social problem, or do we really have too much on our plates?

If we are really honest with ourselves, can we justify every waking minute
and classify it as busy?

Are we giving ourselves a “Get out of Jail Free” card? By saying that we are
busy, eventually we will believe it ourselves, even if we are not.

Why can't we get the right work life balance that we all so desperately
need? Is this the best we can do?

Given that a training session can last from between one hour and several days, and it is concentrated time (when you are training, you are training - you
cannot do anything else), how can we be expected to perform anything else?

Top tips for effective time management:

  • Plan your work and work your plan
    Identify the times you will be in training, designing and evaluating.
    Identify the time you have outside this. Tasks that can only be done by you – for example, training delivery and design - is your “targeted time”. Tasks that need to be done, but not necessarily by you – for example, administration or evaluation - is your “maintenance time”.
  • Focus your energy on one thing at a time
    A reason that we don't get enough done in a day is that we try to do so much
    at one time. Focus on one thing at a time and keep doing it until you have
    got to where you want to get to.
  • Know the value of five minutes
    It’s shocking how much you can get done in a short period of time. For
    example, you get out of training and decide that it is too late to start
    anything now. Go ahead and start it - chances are you'll get further than
    you think.
  • Ask yourself the question
    Ask yourself "What is the best use of my time at the moment?" Rarely, the
    best use of your time is mindlessly chatting to colleagues (usually about
    how busy you are, ironically enough!)
  • Take responsibility
    You are ultimately responsible for the management of your time, not anyone
    else. You merely rent your time out to activities. If you find that your
    time is being taken away from you, stop renting your time out to that source.
  • Allow time for rest
    Don't neglect your rest time, If you are not well rested, you will not
    perform, try to avoid working late too often. You can do this by following
    the above pointers.
  • You can find more about Time Managers at


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