Time management for team leaders is a critical and much-needed skill. This is especially beneficial when you call for a meeting.
The reality is, there are plenty of meetings that go way over the allocated time, and by the end of it, you feel like it was not a productive discussion at all. It just wasted everybody’s time. There are also meetings where unnecessary topics are discussed, and you have a hard time steering it back on track.
You might think that avoiding these meeting boo-boos are simple, but they’re not. It takes practice and discipline to ensure that meetings are within the allocated time and with the purpose being met
What is Time Management Skill?
Time management is your personal process of planning, organizing, and dividing your time between and among specific tasks.
Good time management allows you to maximize your hours and encourages you to work smarter. By managing your time, you can efficiently work and complete tasks without sacrificing the rest of your activities.
How to Manage Time During Meetings?
As the host or meeting leader, you need to keep your focus on the real purpose of this discussion. You need to balance the situation where you keep everything on track while still giving time and attention to every member’s feedback and recommendations.
Here are a few suggestions to help you to manage your meetings:
Be Conscious of Every Minute
The best way to keep your meeting on track time-wise is to have a thorough but concise agenda. The topics on your plan should be truly relevant for the entire team and not one or two people.
If you have questions for one person that may impact your meeting, ask these questions before your meeting. Sometimes you may notice that one topic takes much more time than expected. Allow a little leeway on your agenda for this type of situation, but you will have to make a judgment call on how much extra time you will spend.
Consider moving on if an issue simply cannot be solved or concluded in that meeting. You can consider adding it to the agenda of your next team meeting.
Another great way to manage your time is to make sure you have all the necessary information like handouts, presentations, and backup data, well in advance of your meeting. This way, you will not waste time searching for information while running your meeting.
Of course, the best way to keep your meeting on time is to start the meeting on time! Avoid wasting time with idle chatter at the beginning of your meeting.
Stay on Topic
Time management for team leaders also means staying on topic during a meeting which can be a tough task. What usually happens is that one person raises a slightly off-topic question, and before you know it, you are spending time discussing issues that have nothing to do with your meeting!
This is not to say that all off-topic questions are not necessary; they are just not essential within the context of your meeting. The best way to address this is to have a parking lot for these questions when tracking your meeting minutes.
You can inform your participants that these questions will be answered at a later time. After your meeting, you can review the items in your parking lot and determine the best way to deal with them.
Your agenda should be your guide to stay on topic and on time. Refer to it constantly during your meeting to make sure you are staying on track.
How to Improve Time Management?
One of the most practical ways of improving your time management is using resources that can do “some” of the manual work for you. Learning to delegate tasks, in the beginning, is complicated because of the feeling of losing 100% control, but it is worth it, and you can reallocate your focus on more important things.
AgreeDo is one of today’s popular meeting management software that you can incorporate into your day-to-day life. This is your new personal assistant when writing your meeting minutes, assigning tasks, collaborating ideas, and sharing everything with your team.
What AgreeDo can do is return an hour or two of your time so you can focus on other activities that need to be done. It takes time to get used to this software, but you would know how competent it is to be part of your processes along the way.
Another recommendation to enhance your time management skills is to move your meeting minutes to the cloud. You might have hesitations because of the risk of confidential information being at risk.
Knowing what this activity can do for you as well as its cons may help you come up with a decision.
- It allows a more extensive collaboration within your organization.
- It promotes convenience and mobility to anyone and everyone in your organization.
- No additional installation is required. You can work with your existing browser.
- You can enjoy enhanced capacity since there are no restrictions on the limit of data you move.
- It is a cost-effective investment where you only pay for what you use and some extra.
- No 100% guarantee when it comes to security and protection of your data – both the confidential and general information you move to the cloud.
- Building trust with a third-party provider or software to keep and maintain your information without the risk of exposure.
The Final Verdict
Time management for team leaders is a massive responsibility and a skill that needs continuous improvement. By being open to new approaches to managing your time, you can be more effective and productive in your role as a leader in your organization. It is just a matter of being creative and using the right resources so you can get precious minutes of your time back and use it for urgent matters.