What Is Time Management?

Working Smarter to Enhance Productivity

What Is Time Management? - Working Smarter to Enhance Productivity

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Improve the way that you use your time.

Time Management Definition

“Time management” is the process of organizing and planning how to divide your time between specific activities. Good time management enables you to work smarter – not harder – so that you get more done in less time, even when time is tight and pressures are high. Failing to manage your time damages your effectiveness and causes stress.

It seems that there is never enough time in the day. But, since we all get the same 24 hours, why is it that some people achieve so much more with their time than others? The answer lies in good time management.

The highest achievers manage their time exceptionally well. By using the time-management techniques in this section, you can improve your ability to function more effectively – even when time is tight and pressures are high.

Good time management requires an important shift in focus from activities to results: being busy isn’t the same as being effective. (Ironically, the opposite is often closer to the truth.)

Spending your day in a frenzy of activity often achieves less, because you’re dividing your attention between so many different tasks. Good time management lets you work smarter – not harder – so you get more done in less time.

What Is “Time Management?”

“Time management” refers to the way that you organize and plan how long you spend on specific activities.

It may seem counter-intuitive to dedicate precious time to learning about time management, instead of using it to get on with your work, but the benefits are enormous:

  • Greater productivity and efficiency.
  • A better professional reputation.
  • Less stress.
  • Increased opportunities for advancement.
  • Greater opportunities to achieve important life and career goals.

Failing to manage your time effectively can have some very undesirable consequences:

  • Missed deadlines.
  • Inefficient work flow.
  • Poor work quality.
  • A poor professional reputation and a stalled career.
  • Higher stress levels.

Spending a little time learning about time-management techniques will have huge benefits now – and throughout your career.

Key Points

Time management is the process of organizing and planning how much time you spend on specific activities. Invest some time in our comprehensive collection of time management articles to learn about managing your own time more efficiently, and save yourself time in the future.

This site teaches you the skills you need for a happy and successful career; and this is just one of many tools and resources that you'll find here at Mind Tools. Subscribe to our free newsletter, or join the Mind Tools Club and really supercharge your career!

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Comments (108)
  • This week Yolande wrote
    Hi Harriet,

    Yes, time management isn't always easy, but fortunately it's a skill that everybody can learn.

    Mind Tools Team
  • This week Harriet wrote
    Managing time is an art. Not all can become masters in it. Yet the way to excel in time management is simple.
  • Over a month ago Michele wrote
    Hi adshukla,

    A warm welcome to you! You have come to the right place to build your personal mastery skills. We have an entire skill area devoted to time management available in our Toolkit. For a list of what is available, here's a URL you can paste into your browser:


    You will also find a number of resources on presentation skills in the communications skill area of our Toolkit.

    If you need advice or ideas on these two two topics, come visit the Forums. The Forums are the place where members meet to share their experiences. We all learn from each other over there.

    Mind Tools
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