The famous five:
Like all management concepts conceived in Japan, 5S, too sounds exotic – translate it from the Japanese, and yet again, it becomes simple common sense.

Seiri: Separate out all that, is unnecessary and eliminate it
Seiton: Those things found to be necessary are put in order so that they lie ready for use when needed
Seiso: Clean workplace, equipment and prevent defects
Seiketsu: Standardize; make cleaning and checking routine
Shitsuke: Discipline and training, personal Kaizen to the previous 4 steps.

Sharpen your use of time by adopting some of our “Top Six” tips:
1 – Set Goals:Write down your goals (it’s only a wish until you write it down ‘) Goals must be useful, measurable and attainable. Prioritize your goals using “A,B,C” method.

A = High, B = Medium, C = Low, Evaluate your goals daily. Visualize your goals – imagine how you will achieve your goals and “do it”

2. Avoid Procrastination:
Procrastination is the one time waster of which you have control.

How to keep procrastination under control:

a) slice the task into more manageable pieces and start on the easiest one.
b) get a clear picture of the task by discussing and rationalizing with others.
c) designate interim completion points.
d) chart your progress.
e) set a deadline for completing the project.

3. Minimize Interruptions:
The average employee is interrupted every 9 minutes. This equals 48 interruptions per day

How to handle interruptions:

a) if it’s necessary, handle immediately.
b) if it’s unnecessary, stop it or avoid it.
c) if it’s untimely, reschedule it.

4. Manage Your Telephone Time:
The telephone is both a terrific time saver and an insidious thief:
Unfortunately, phones are a primary source of interruptions. In fact, 40% of managers spend more than 2 hours per day on the phone.

How to manage your phone calls:

a) screen your calls through an assistant or answering machine.
b) if the person you’re calling isn’t available, leave a precise message – you’re more likely to get an answer back without calling again.
c) use automatic dialing to save valuable time.
d) return calls before lunch or the end of the day – people get to the point faster when lunch or quitting time draws near.
e) keep a phone log in your planner to record decisions and discussions.

5. Conquer Paperwork:
You should handle paper only once. Try the TRAF system.

Toss it if you have an assistant, delegate the sorting, screening and tossing of mail
Refer it keep a folder handy for each person you deal with on a regular basis – when that person comes to see you, open the folder and take care of all the items at once
Act on it start an action folder or action page in your planner
File it with a discard date on papers that will outlive their usefulness and clutter your files

6. Plan shorter and More Effective Meetings:
Meetings can be a big time waster. Before you set up a meeting, evaluate your agenda and determine if the information could be shared more efficiently by distributing it with a routing slip.

If it’s necessary to schedule a meeting:

a) don’t allot more time for meetings than necessary – many times all the tasks can be completed in less time than originally scheduled.
b) distribute the meeting agenda at least one day in advance and don’t overload the agenda.
C) start meetings on time, even if everyone is not present.
d) don’t schedule a meeting for more than 2 hours; beyond that concentration suffers.
e) issue minutes promptly.
f) attend meetings only if necessary.

Time management can be as informal or as detailed as you want to make it. Develop a plan to fit your own needs – be flexible throughout time and tailor it as your needs change.

Remember – It’s not how much time you have, It’s how well you manage it.