As a team leader, you’re likely busy. You’re managing your team, making sure they have everything they need to succeed, and taking care of any emergencies that might come up.
But being busy shouldn’t stop you from being an effective manager. You can still manage your time effectively and boost your productivity.
Here are some tips for getting more done while keeping your team on track.
5 Tips To Improve Your Time Management
- Automate As Much As Possible
Several tools will help you stay on top of your to-do list. But the best way to keep track of all the moving pieces is to automate as much as possible.
Below are some professional tools you can use:
Traqq is a time tracking software that makes it easy to keep tabs on your staff’s efficiency and performance offline and online. For instance, when employees work from home, Traqq keeps track of their working hours and breaks to generate accurate timesheets.
Traqq also lets you take background screenshots and videos of your desktop to promote openness and accountability further. Moreover, if teammates forget to start the timer, they can easily input time manually.
This feature is excellent if you need it for something other than digital work. Employees’ use of the internet and mobile apps can also be monitored. That can give you insight into your team’s method of getting work done.
You can use Trello for project management and task tracking. It’s free, easy to use, and has a mobile app for iPhone or Android. You can have several boards set up with labels like “To Do,” “In Progress,” and “Done.”
Each task gets added to one of these lists based on its stage. This makes it super simple for people working on a project together.
That’s because they can see exactly where they need help. Or what needs finishing up next without asking questions about where things stand at any given time.
- Be Transparent In Your Communication
If you want to help your team members manage their time better, make sure they understand what you need them to do. When you communicate clearly and often, it makes it much easier for everyone to prioritize their tasks.
If you are clear about what needs doing and how long it will take, everyone will know what’s expected of them. That way, the teammates aren’t surprised when they work on a specific project or task.
Your team members will feel more comfortable asking questions if they don’t understand something. That is better than your team members assume you know best.
When you do that, everyone can be confident that their contributions are valued equally regardless of their position within the company.
- Use Email Effectively
Your inbox can be an excellent tool for communicating with your team. But if you don’t keep it organized and use it properly, it can become one of your biggest time wasters.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
Be specific in your email subject lines.
If you send an email titled “Question,” the recipient won’t know what to expect when they open the message. Is it a question about work? What kind of question? Maybe they have an answer for you already.
Suppose you make sure each email clearly communicates its purpose in the subject line, for example: “Please review our new pricing structure”. In that case, there’s less ambiguity about what someone needs to do when they read through their inboxes.
Share essential documents via attachments.
Share relevant documents using attachments rather than embedded links in text messages or emails. This way, no one has to worry about downloading files from shared cloud storage spaces just to get access to necessary information.
- Delegate Wisely
When you delegate, it’s vital to ensure the task isn’t a part of your core responsibilities. If it is, then you should stay in charge of it yourself. This will help prevent others from feeling like they have to ask permission for everything they do.
In addition, you can delegate tasks that are in your core responsibilities but that you don’t enjoy doing. However, delegation may not be an option when the task can only be completed by you.
That said, if the task makes you cringe—like answering emails all day long—you might consider delegating some of those duties. But you have to choose someone willing to take on such responsibilities.
- Manage Your Team’s Schedule
A good schedule is your first line of defense against time waste. Here are some ways to schedule meetings effectively:
Schedule meetings to avoid wasting time
If you have a team of five, don’t schedule 20-minute meetings every hour. You’ll find yourself spending half the day in meetings that could be done over email or Slack. Instead, give yourself 30 minutes and send out a plan with clear objectives and expectations ahead of time.
This way, meeting participants will come with questions prepared. That will help prevent time-wasting by asking basic questions that could quickly be answered beforehand.
Make sure the meeting doesn’t overlap with other schedules
Schedule meetings to avoid conflicts between team members’ schedules. Or primarily if they work remotely or have competing priorities at work. The more people there are in the room, the higher chance there is for conflict due to differences in opinion.
That may lead to heated arguments about who should do what task before moving on to another topic.
This also wastes time because no one wants to spend hours arguing about whose fault it was when something went wrong instead of working together.
Your goal should always be to have productive conversations without any conflict whatsoever.
With these tips, you can manage your time effectively while still being a good leader. Team leaders need to understand that they don’t have all the answers. So they must work with their team members and delegate tasks as much as possible.
With automation tools like Traqq, Trello, and Slack, it’s easier for teams worldwide to get projects done and increase productivity.