Effective Team Management; what it is and how to be good at it – Timeneye

The importance of effective Team Management for companies and employees and how to implement it thanks to 6 grand and easy tips!

Team management is a manager and leader’s capability to give instructions and lead employees to meet a common goal.

Team management is a must-have skill for a team leader since they have to communicate effectively, give instructions, or delegate tasks to team members without sounding “bossy.”

Managers must develop effective Team Management skills and reach business goals with team members.

Team Management; what it is and why it’s so important

We tend to think of team management as the capability managers should have in structured and big companies. Still, it is essential in all-size companies; even freelancers would benefit from it.

Team Management skills focus on effective communication and collaborative problem-solving; every company’s step forward is a whole team’s success.

 Human resources and team leaders now understand the importance of building a trust-worthy environment where employees can grow professionally and personally, thanks to constructive feedback and effective communication.

Therefore managers should not just see Team Management as the capacity to convey excellent team performance but as a way to help employees to express their needs and necessities and grow a company.

Effective team management results in employee loyalty and having the company’s best interest at heart.

Team Management is, deservedly, becoming more and more critical for the following reasons:

-It acknowledges a leadership style based on problem solving where managers ask “face-to-face” feedback to employees and are open to suggestions and changes of directions;

Collaboration and team building are fundamental pillars in which the team leader and team members run together for a common goal which is clearly defined and discussed during the whole project life-cycle;

Communication does not just include meetings or quarters/semesters feedback but is a regular habit acquired by both professionals: team members and leaders.

Team Management aims to keep communication bidirectional. It is seen as an opportunity for growth and development by the managers who do not feel their leadership is at risk but, instead, welcome their employees’ feedback.

Of course, each team leader has a different approach, and some tend to rely on traditional methods and micromanage surveillance tools to keep an eye on employees’ work. Therefore this behavior tends to stress employees out, making them anxious to get more and more done, which gives them the feeling of burnout.

Good managers have a collaborative and open approach, and because of it, they do not need to implement the company micromanaging activities. Instead, they allocate part of the company’s budget to software, such as team management and time tracking software.

Timeneye is a time tracking tool able to help teams to reach common goals and keep an eye on ongoing projects and other team members’ activities.

With Timeneye, you can track your many projects and split them into different phases to better see how much each step takes and if you and your colleagues are respecting the deadlines.

Implementing a tool such as Timeneye is essential for companies because it helps leaders to easily teamwork and trust their employees; plus, it is a great way to give constructive feedback and improve team performance project after project.

Timeneye is essential for managers first to acquire Team Management skills and to acknowledge how important it is to build trust and structure activities on open communication to reach business goals and team success.

6 tips for effective Team Management.

Team leaders and freelancers who collaborate with other professionals should develop team management skills to better work with a group of people and succeed in business and personal life since the two are always more seen together.

Here is a list of tips that might help managers to adopt a more effective team management approach and, if they are not already doing it, assume the following behaviors that might help team members work at their best. At the same time, the whole company meets its business goals.

Collaborate rather than manage

Managers should remember that they are part of the teamwork and, indeed, they should lead by example every step of the way, from the initial brainstorming to the execution. All of these participate, giving feedback, acknowledging the team’s progress, and providing constructive feedback in case something needs to be going in the right direction.

Timeneye helps managers and team members collaborate since it allows them to split the project into phases, each of which can be taken care of by a different team member. A project phase can also contain team meetings in which employees can discuss which direction to take, and approach the project might take the time that might be necessary, and the related budget.

Communicate directly while constructively

As already stressed, open communication is key to team management.

Giving context to what managers ask their employees and sharing their opinion while being open to receiving them from others should be seen as team management and an effective leadership style.

Miscommunication is the cause of stress, anxiety, confusion, and misunderstanding for employees who would like to know if their work is respecting the guidelines, what the client is expecting, or if it is going in the right, desired direction.

When communication is lacking, employees feel less involved in the company’s work, negatively impacting their productivity and motivation. It can drive them to look for a better place to feel appreciated.

Timeneye is a time management tool that helps team members to communicate better! It easily integrates with communication and collaborative apps such as Microsoft Teams, Gmail, and Outlook Calendar.

Meetings, calls, and the time spent sending emails is saved and safely stored in the cloud by Timeneye.

Timeneye knows how important open communication is to be good at Team Management!

Get the best out of remote work

Remote work is an excellent opportunity for both companies and employees since it is easier for them to find the perfect “working” match without basing the research on geographical locations.

Remote teams have nowadays become the normality, but they might face some difficulties. Communication, task management, and problem-solving are just a few of them.

To overcome slight work difficulties, team leaders have to be good at communication and recording, writing down information in shared documents, and organizing the project plan (possibly in advance) in a visual template, such as Kanban boards.

Not seeing every day, face-to-face, your colleagues or team members does not mean that you can forget to give them feedback.

Constructive feedbacks are essential because they save time and even team members’ motivation since they do not feel wrong or not good enough for not taking the right direction.

Timeneye aims to ease the life of remote teams since it integrates with communication and collaborative apps such as Gmail, Teams, etc., and it also integrates with project management software such as Asana, Basecamp, Trello, CkilcUp, and GitLab.

Project management tools, integrated into a time tracker such as Timeneye, allow managers to keep an eye on the projects’ life cycle, on how much time and budget have been already utilized, and how team members integrate and follow each other’s work.

Set boundaries and delegate with care

Previously we said that a good leadership style considers team members’ necessities and provides constructive feedback, such as ongoing communication.

Team leaders should remember to set boundaries and, sometimes, be strict in some choices, such as delegating tasks. The risks are that employees tend to interrupt and email managers for every single activity, not allowing them to work on more critical studies and make decisions with a free mind.

It is up to team leaders to be clear in communicating roles, activities to do, and other team members’ responsibilities. Still, it is up to the team members to raise their hands and ask for more in-depth info, extra calls, and meetings only when needed.

Otherwise, the workflow gets continuously interrupted, and continuous interruptions might manifest in a lack of focus.

Promote your team members’ growth, both professional and personal

Team leaders are the ones who should direct employees to do what they like the most, as well as nurture each team member’s talent. It is suitable for the company, which gets the best job from those who love to do that, and it also benefits the employees since they feel appreciated and can grow in their soft and hard skills.

A workplace should not be seen, by managers in the first place, as the environment in which people share their capabilities and skills and then leave to return home.

It should instead be a place where employees can express their personalities and, with time, evolve.

If this does not happen, the employees tend to look for another place where they can feel free to express their other talents, not only the ones they get paid.

Contemplate change and give importance to it

Managers must be open to change since it is part of everyday business life.

Risk management implementation is essential for companies to feel ready to surf change. Doing so does not seem like something to run off but, instead, as an ordinary and even necessary condition.

In doing so, the manager has to be the one who takes and explains changes to team members and pushes them, in a calm and easy period for the company and the employees as well, to look and test together new approaches and technologies that might be at use in the next future.

Now that you have had an overview and got tips about how to be good at Team Management, try to implement some of them and notice how your team responds, and the whole company starts to benefit from it.

To better help you do so, give Timeneye a try and start your 30-day free trial now!

5 Agile Project Management Phases to handle a project with organization and flexibility

From the Agile Manifesto to Agile implementation; 5 Agile Project Management phases to manage a project with organization and adaptability

We all have heard about agile project management, perhaps even without knowing what exactly that is.

Many companies, especially the ones that work in an ever-changing market, and deal with new clients’ needs and necessities, have implemented agile project management methodologies leaving a more traditional project management approach.

What Agile project management is: origins and implementation

Agile project management is an operative method adopted in software development that has largely been appreciated since it allows companies to receive immediate feedback

Companies adopt an Agile methodology to be able to guarantee a better product thanks to shorter sprints and a step-by-step development process: the agile team gets feedback from stakeholders in each product’s development cycle, not just after the release.

In the 1990s IT managers started to feel traditional project management methods as outdated and not responsive to what the market and its users were asking.

They needed less structured and rigid approaches, more flexibility, freedom in deciding what direction to take, and also, greater adaptability in case of changes.

Software houses needed a different development process; it became necessary to know if their product lifecycle would have been able to satisfy the user’s request because, in a dynamic market, the release of a product is considered too late.

In 2001 the Agile Manifesto was born, thanks to a group of software developers who decided to join and write down a new, almost philosophical, approach to IT development.

Agile project management Manifesto listed 12 principles that focused on user-centered design and emphasize the importance for team members to collaborate, work flexibly and adapt to changes.

But the core of the Agile Manifesto is the 4 main values:

-People and interpersonal relations rather than operations, techniques, or tools;

Responsive software over exhaustive documentation;

Collaboration with stakeholders and customers rather than negotiation;

Answering change rather than strictly following a plan.

The values focused on the software market since the Agile Manifesto was thought by IT developers, but its new project management approach, its consequent iterative approach, and its people-driven philosophy have been implemented in other industries as well.

Industries that felt the traditional project management method was not capable to respond to what the market was asking, started to adopt Agile methodologies to make new products and services.

Aerospace, Advertising, Marketing, Telecommunication, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals, and Non-profits; are just a few industries that adopted and are still adopting Agile as the main project management method.

Agile project management consists in splitting the project’s workflow into development cycles called sprints where activities get prioritized and put in the backlog

The development process does not last until the product is completed but it is divided into sprint plannings that focuses on a product’s feature and the first step of product development.

When a sprint is completed, the agile team is ready to receive the first round of feedback and evaluate what initiatives to take: if it is the case to rework something that does not seem to be effective or go on with the next user story and continue to develop the product as already decided.

Years later the Agile Manifesto release, the Association for Project Management (APM) was founded and it came up with a Framework that aimed to help companies rely on iterative and responsive methodologies.

The APM framework was thought to help companies think, plan and develop a project through an initial phase of envisioning the product release.

Agile project management was born focusing on values and principles but, lately, it found a concrete usage in many companies’ daily life thanks to the 5 phases listed in the Agile project management framework.

5 Agile project management phases:

Envision Phase

The first, initial phase in the APM framework is called Envision and it starts with the business plan approval.

It is here that team members meet and find the vision for the project taking into consideration what stakeholders and in-target clients think, needs and how they will benefit from the newborn product/service.

Focusing on these questions arises what features and capabilities the product should have and also which team members are the right ones for the product/ software development.

Timeneye is a time tracking tool used by companies that have adopted an Agile project management approach and need to prioritize the project’s activities and, for a better organization, divide the project into phases.

With Timeneye users can open a project and split it into phases, indeed!

This way, the agile team members can better focus on each sprint and monitor how long activities take, and how many people and effort are involved while keeping an eye on the budget.

In the Envision phase, Timeneye helps the users to write down what was before just theorized.

Let’s think, for example, about a marketing agency that has a client who wants to change the perception that its stakeholder has of his/her brand and related products.

In the Envision phase, the agency “translates” the client’s request in a project and its deliverables: rebranding and website.

Speculate Phase

In the development process, this can be considered the second step.

The project’s vision is already decided, the project needs are already translated into tasks and to-dos, and it is here that the agile team writes them down in the backlog.

In this step, the project’s expectations appear clear, and it starts to appear also clear the workflow and the project’s lifecycle.

The company might focus on 2 to-dos:

-The team members should have understood and elaborated on what the project takes and what the activities are. After having put them in the backlog, the Agile team can now focus on the user stories to develop product features able to reflect what the user needs.

-Team members have to prioritize activities, clarify how long a step might take, and how many people and resources are involved.

The project indeed implies a multi-level collaboration, and the development process should have an iterative approach.

The iterative approach means that the team must make improvements, test, and adjust, every time a usability issue rises and needs to be addressed.

Let’s think about the marketing agency that just got a new project to take care of, “Rebrand+website”, and needs now to decide and prioritize the necessary activities, evaluate how much time a project might take and how many resources it would need.

Timeneye helps the company do so thanks to the possibility to split the project into phases, allocating a budget to each of them and a certain amount of time necessary to conclude them.

Graphical user interface, application

Description automatically generated

Explore Phase

At this stage, the team members explore the various possibilities they have to develop the product’s features respecting what was already established.

What the team members do, gets tested here; this means that the vision of the project (Envision phase) and its related tasks and activities (Speculate) are put into practice here. How? Transforming the needs into a development process that adopts an iteration approach to consider each sprint as completed (think, build, make adjustments, test, and release).

To better develop the product’s features, the Agile team will go further in understanding the user stories and, later, the users’ feedback.

As with all the Agile project management phases, the Explore phase is highly user-focused.

To evaluate which direction might better help the team to develop the “Rebrand+website” project, the company might rely on data already acquired regarding similar projects developed through different approaches.

Timeneye is indeed able to collect data, store it on the cloud and make reports able to give the users insights and data resources to take a reliable and trustworthy decisions for the next future.

Total time, money, billable and non-billable hours, and the whole project cost are just a few metrics that you might use not just to see how your project went, but also, for next, upcoming, similar ones that might help you taking decisions and evaluations in advance without any wasting of time.

Adapt Phase

In this fourth phase, the team members get the first reviews of what they have been doing and it is here that the product gets the first fixes.

The adaptation phase might imply a change of direction, adopting another project’s approach based on the client’s feedback.

This can be a major turning point because in case the product does not satisfy the clients’ necessities, the agile team needs to come back to the previous project’s phases, or, in case the product corresponds to the users’ necessities, the project workflow aims to an end.

In the Adapt phase, Timeneye might help the marketing agency to collect the data and see how “done” activities have been taken care of,  and evaluate if, from an internal point of view, the iterative approach of thinking, building, making adjustments, test and release (in this case we can, internally, consider a product release when the one who is taking care of it feels ready to share it with the rest of team) have been done properly.

A screenshot of a computer

Description automatically generated with medium confidence

Timeneye allows users to customize the reports to focus on what is important to them! 

Graphical user interface, application

Description automatically generated

It is also possible for them to set weekly, or even daily, reports and also receive an automatic email able to give an overview of the weekly activities.

Graphical user interface, website

Description automatically generated

Close Phase

The agile project management framework considers this as the latest project phase.

At this point the project should be ready to be delivered or, instead, the team will have to come back and make some reworks.

These phases are typically used in Agile project management methodologies such as Kanban and Scrum.

Kanban relies on Kanban boards to help the agile team to visualize work and see in detail the workflow to follow and the project’s work in progress.

Timeneye offers you great help since it easily integrates with project management tools, such as Jira, that rely on kanban boards to structure, in a visual manner, the projects’ workflow.

Scrum is the most utilized Agile method and it strongly goes hand in hand with the Agile project management phases.

Scrum relies on sprints and it utilizes an iterative approach to release products aligned with what the market asks.

Perks of Agile project management

Agile project management was thought to guarantee IT companies more adaptability to changes in a market driven by continuous changes.

The Agile approach is considered by nowadays risk management as less risky since it manages proper priorities and it develops a product/service taking into consideration step-by-step users’ feedback without waiting until the end of the product.

This means remaining on time to adjust, fix and change direction or new products’ implantation required by the clients.

Agile’s iterative approach and emphasis on continuous feedback allow the team to take insightful choices after having collected significant data.

Thanks to customers’ collaboration (as the values say), regular testing and product releases in a shorter amount of time than traditional project management, guarantee companies greater customer satisfaction.

Agile project management phases teach us the importance of timing if we want to work in competitive markets

Let Timeneye helps you out; sign up and receive our free 30-day trial!

Risk Management and the “Inductivist Turkey” of B.Russell: the story that teaches us the importance of external risks

Risk management, what is it and how should be implemented in every business company; this is keeping in mind the great lesson taught us by the Inductivist Turkey or Russell.

In every company something unexpected happens; it can be a new client approaching with an uncommon request, an order does not arrive on time, a new competitor popping out in your product’s market, or one of your managers being stuck in a traffic jam and cannot make it on time to an important meeting.

Unexpected events can cause problems, and misunderstandings, and they can even cost money or loss of financial resources.

Reasons, why risk management should be implemented as part of a company’s strategy, are many, and managing risks should not be seen as an extraordinary event but a day-to-day thought.

When we talk about risk management it is important to distinguish between risk and threat since they are two different types of danger.

A risk is something that a company might face while a threat is a danger that is coming for real, and its nature is clear and known.

In a company’s case, a risk might be a natural disaster or even a cyberattack.

In case the company knows how it is not properly protecting its online services and database, then cyber attacks are not risks but, instead, they are threats.

In the business world, a risk is an event or a condition and it is considered normal, for a company, to face them at a certain time. For this reason, the company has to elaborate a risk management program; this identifying, first of all, the potential risks it might face.

Risk Management, what is it and how ISO 31000 helps implement it in every business company

Risk management has been theorized, thanks to internal audits, empirical and previous events that companies have faced, and a list of regulatory steps that have been emitted to help mitigate risk.

ISO (International Organization for Standardization) has emitted the Risk Management Guidelines to better help companies to anticipate dangerous happenings and make a risk management plan as mitigating risk.

In ISO 31000 risk management approach there are 5 steps to follow in the decision-making process of acting to prevent the company from facing great danger.

IS0 31000 risk management 5 steps

  1. Risk Identification: it is the moment in which risk, as the name says, gets identified and it can be categorized (financial risk, cybersecurity, production chain).
    In risk identification, it is also important to evaluate how much risk might impact the project lifecycle of a company and, in general, its overall business.
  2. Risk analysis: in this second step, the company faces a qualitative problem-solving method in which software, tools, and research are used to better understand the risk and, consequently, what sort of risk control to adopt.
    The main questions that the company has to have in mind are: what are the chances that this particular risk would happen? What is the potential impact and how much this event would impact the whole company? How long the event will take to generate an enterprise risk management crisis?
  3. Risk evaluation/prioritization: not all sort of risks has the same impact on a company. Some of them might cause a little damage while others can have a great impact on the company itself. This is why it is important to prioritize the risks after having categorized them.
  4. Risk mitigation: In this step, it has been suggested to list each risk, how long each of them will take, since their manifestation, to cause impacts on the company, and what sort of impacts they would cause.
    Here the company has to think about a strategy for effective risk management and decide what sort of policy to adopt when risks occur. The company can decide to go for risk avoidance, ignoring the risk in terms of not even doing actions that might “activate” it, or accepting it.
    It is also here that the company has to decide if rely on an insurance company, “transferring” the risk to someone else and, it also has to decide if it wants to go for risk reduction introduce a policy, and take initiatives to control and keep an eye on potential risks.
  5. Risk monitoring/review: Having a 360 overview of what is going on in your company’s market, new risks brought by new technologies,  product usage, etc. is a great way to keep the company as safe as possible.
    Regulations, laws, and stakeholders’ requests imply an always-changing environment and they all might expose the company to potential risks.
    Companies, indeed, need software and reliable tools, such as Timeneye, that allow managers to keep an eye on what is going inside and outside the company and, step by step, elaborate a risk management process

Now that we have seen the ISO 31000’s steps to adopt in terms of risk reduction and management, it is important to understand what sort of risk a company might face.

The most common risks a company might face

They are usually listed in 3 potential risk categories: preventable risks, strategy risks, and external risks.

  • Preventable risks: these risks happen inside and for this reason are also called operational risks. They are usually controllable and easily avoided or taken care of.

Companies take care of preventable risks by making rules and behavioral codes that employees have to follow to keep the company in a safe zone.

Preventable risks happen, for example, when managers or employees do unethical or illicit actions that might put the company at risk.

  • Strategy risks are those types of risks that a company willingly decides to take to reach (hopefully) a higher business position on the market or a greater return in the future.

They differ from preventable risks since these latest are not wanted while strategic ones indeed are.

Asking the bank for a loan to make some new investment can be considered a strategic risk for a company.

These sorts of risks cannot be taken care of through rules or company suggestions.

In this case, what is important for a company to have is a risk management system based on the company’s capabilities to manage the events that will/would happen as a consequence.

This system is indeed designed to encourage companies to take strategic risks, even big ones, to feel comfortable and in control.

  • External risks are born, as the name says, from outside and the company will inevitably have to face them.

These risks might imply great danger to a company and they can cause fatal consequences to the future of the company itself if a risk management process does not take action.

External risks can be natural (climate change), economic (a worldwide economic crisis and inflation can cause financial risk) or even political choices (fall of a government) that can put at risk a business lifecycle.

The management needs to focus on external risk identification and it has to come up with a risk assessment and plan able to reduce the impact of these risks on the company.

The Inductivist Turkey or Bertrand Russell is an inspiring story able to teach us a lesson about external risks, and how unexpected events can happen and cause great damage.

Empirical data and, consequently, risk assessment and analysis are essential for companies to have effective time management that works.

The Inductivist Turkey of Bertrand Russell: an inspiring story able to teach us a lesson about the importance of risk management

 Scientists and philosophers thought about Inductivism as a response from science where consequential and similar events are considered as enough elements to conclude

When there is a consecutive happening of similar events, there seems to be a simple law able to describe the phenomenon. 

We might say that induction is a form of reasoning that starts from the examination of several specific cases and leads to a universal conclusion

We, as human beings, tend to think of things as related and we make a consequential relationship between them. If something happens today, tomorrow, and the next day again we unconsciously think that the same thing will happen repeatedly. This phenomenon goes under the name of Inductivism, and it has been first theorized by Francis Bacon in 1620 it became discussed later, with Bertrand Russel’s theories and thoughts; the one regarding the Inductivist Turkey. 

This story became extremely popular, thanks to Carl Popper’s re-formula

The “Inductivist Turkey” and risk management: how dangerous is it to rely on “taken for granted” situations 

The story tells that on a farm there was a turkey that every morning patiently waited to be fed by the farmer at 9 a.m. 

Every morning the turkey had the same routine: he woke up and waited for his food to be hand-in. 

Sunny days, rainy days, Mondays, Wednesdays, and even Sundays: he knew for sure that the farmer would go and feed him.  

We might say that he has an inductivist conscience concluding that every day, at 9 am he would be fed

The described routine went on and on until one day, for being precise during Thanksgiving Day, when the farmer opened the paddock and, instead of feeding him, he pulled his neck to make a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. 

In our everyday life, however, we constantly rely on inductions since they easily provide us with predictions about the outcomes of our actions. With no inductions, our world would be chaotic as we would have no reason to believe that the future is similar to the past and this would raise many doubts. 

In a project lifecycle, decision-makers start from a present situation and make assumptions; this also relies on past and previous experiences. Indeed, inductivism is a logical way of thinking but it can be taken wrongly since it does not concern any outbreak or changes. 

How to avoid concluding and, instead, keep an eye on what is going on 

Once the philosopher Karl Popper read the Inductivist turkey’s story, he immediately argued that the truth of universal statements is not logically justified through the truth of single propositions, as many of these are: any conclusions obtained in this way can always be false. 

So what is Popper’s proposal? His idea is that once admitted there are no inductive procedures that make it possible to establish the truth of hypotheses and theories, the pretense of being able to attribute to scientific claims a truth should be dropped. 

Science is not empirically verifiable

No matter how great the number of singular statements at our disposal is, this cannot verify universal statements, while just one singular statement can falsify

So, what do decision-makers and managers do when we talk about project management risks and how to avoid them

The story of the Inductivist Turkey teaches us that we cannot rely on similar events or a particular business case because in project management just even a single difference can change the course of a project lifecycle and its related goals and objectives. 

Despite these difficulties, it is important for project planning to keep constant track and monitor every single step to not just assume universal statements or draw conclusions but, instead, have an on-time idea of what is changing or going in another direction. 

Timeneye, the time tracking software that will help you monitor your project life while avoiding making assumptions.

To achieve their goals and objectives, managers need to monitor the project lifecycle at every single step to verify if something is interfering with it. 

Many project management tools also include one of the key features when we talk about project management methodologies: time tracking. 

On Timeneye, every minute tracked will be assigned to a project, phase, and client. Users can track time just by clicking on a single button, also, Timeneye offers in-depth reporting and monitoring tools to find where the time sinks. These features are essential for decision-makers who need to keep an eye on the project lifecycle and want to avoid bitter surprises realizing too late that they invested time, not in primary activities and tasks. 

Managers can monitor each project’s status, how much of the already decided budget it is taking, the work by receiving a weekly email recap on what the team has done, and also see what are the latest tasks a user has been working on

The Inductivist Turkey taught us that risk management methodologies help us to constantly monitor the project scope and keep an eye on the costs. 

Timeneye is aware of that, and it provides its users with a User Cost Calculator that allows them to monitor the profitability of the project at every single phase of it. If you want to avoid making assumptions and check every single step of your project lifecycle look at our time tracking software and sign up for a free 30-day Timeneye trial!

10 Good Time Management Skills to work smarter, not harder! – Timeneye

10 Good Time Management Skills that will help you manage and give value to your time at work!

We all have a 24-hour day, not an hour more to add or one to cut off.

Sometimes the day seems too short to get all of our to-do list things done.

Time management is the key if we do not want to postpone activities, work extra hours or overthink, in our free time, about what needs to be done.

Mastering time is not easy and, often, we do not even know what exactly time management means and how to apply it to our working and private life.

Indeed, we wrongly tend to think of multitasking as a great way to save time and check off activities on our to-do-list.

Being good at time management is a matter of attitude and personality traits and they take time, hard work, and patience to change, even slightly. 

When we talk about time management it is essential to distinguish personal characteristics, time management skills, and time management techniques.

Time management – Personal Characteristics

It is well known that the environment in which we live, the family and people that surround us, added to some biological traits, shape our personality.

Our characteristics are difficult to get modified and they need great effort and discipline, other than motivation.

Soft skills and life skills are the ones related to personality traits when we talk about time management.

Soft skills mostly regard how we interact with people (social and communication skills), while life skills are more about the challenges we face in life.

In life skills, we find our ability to deal with emotions and stress levels, problem-solving, creative thinking, decision-making, etc., etc.

Hard skills are more related to time management techniques but they are also very important when we talk about personality characteristics and time management. Hard skills usually include diligence, the propensity in being organized, flexibility, etc.

If you are not a pro in effective time management and you have the impression to never have enough time or be in control of your time, before striving to change your personality, you need to, first of all, acquire time management skills.  by getting also a little help from time techniques, such as Time management tools and time tracking software like Timenye can be considered time techniques and offer great help. 

Time management skills and Time management techniques

Skills and techniques combine and support each other but skills are the ability to do something.
Time management skills mostly are the capacity to be fully focused on a task, in control of your time, and ability to avoid wasting time and procrastination. How? Being able to prioritize important tasks and urgent tasks, and plan and set goals.

Techniques embody how a skill gets acquired.

They assume the important role of helping the person to get into the process of acquiring the knowledge that s/he wishes to have.

To better time management, techniques find “practice” in time management methods and tools and they help the user to better manage important tasks with focus, meeting deadlines, and being on time.

Practical examples of Time management techniques are to-do list, the Pomodoro timer or the so-called Pomodoro technique, the Eisenhower Matrix, etc.

Timeneye, for example, is a time management technique that helps users to, step by step, acquire time management skills and make time measurable thanks to a stress-free and easy-to-use time tracker.

Time management skills and techniques are strongly related to each other and, in the next paragraph, we will see the best 10 good time management skills and how Timeneye helps the user to acquire them.

Best 10 time management skills 

1. Plan & organize

First things first! To properly manage time, we all need to start planning and organizing our day/week, the project that has been assigned to us, its related tasks, etc.

Planning skills are fundamental if we want to be good at time management and, to develop them, we need a daily effort and constant activity.

Planning skills include writing down and organizing the calendar, setting up meetings and inviting colleagues to join, splitting a project into tasks, and allocating each one to the right person.

A company usually relies on Microsoft Planner since it allows its users to organize projects and, also, keep an eye on them thanks to visual, intuitive, and collaborative functions.

Timeneye easily integrates with Microsoft Planner giving to the user the possibility to track time on projects, monitor the budget, and stay connected with the team without ever leaving the app. 

Microsoft Planner, as also other apps that integrate with Timeneye such as Google Calendar and Outlook Calendar, contains a calendar since it is one of the main and most useful planning tools for employees and managers.

It is up to them to fully focus on a calendar app (Google Calendar or Outlook Calendar) or, instead, rely on a project management software such as Planner to better manage their time project.

To be good at planning and organizing, we sometimes need a little help and some time management tips. It is here that Timeneye comes in for us. Timeneye is a time tracking software that perfectly integrates with useful calendar apps such as Outlook Calendar and Google Calendar.

If you use Google Calendar or Microsoft Outlook, Timeneye will make your life easier by importing events as suggested time entries, it will track the time you spent on meetings and it will help you organize your workload.

But even if you are not using one of these apps, Timeneye can make your life easier when it comes to planning and organizing. How?

Providing you with an easy-to-use dashboard where you can handle your workflow and see your project split into phases to better focus on a task; we will better see this feature in the next step!

2. Goal setting and priorities

After having planned a project and having decided how to organize ourselves, we have to have clear in mind what our goals are and what we want to reach (hand in the project to the client before the end of the month, outsource less important tasks, etc.) and decide what needs to be prioritized.

What are our priorities? What needs our attention and what, instead, can wait?

It is here that the Eisenhower matrix comes to use since it helps us to evaluate what needs our attention first and what, instead, can wait.

The Eisenhower matrix suggests we DO what is both urgent and most important, DELEGATE what is urgent but not important, PLAN in the calendar what is important but it is not urgent, and DELETE what is not important and not even urgent.

Timeneye helps users to set goals and prioritize what can be considered important and what can wait.

Indeed, Timeneye helps users to monitor their projects, stay on budget and visualize their daily effort.

When a project has been handled in Timeneye it is possible to name it and choose an identifying color, set a budget, and divide it into phases.

It is this latest feature the one that better helps the user to prioritize activities while also allocating them to team members.

Diving a project into phases allows the user to take a closer look at its ongoing projects, understanding what is going off trials, what is taking too long, and what, instead, needs to be prioritized.

3. Delegating and “outsourcing”

Taking care of everything is not always a good idea since, as mentioned before, not all activities can be considered equally urgent or important.

Delegating might be the answer and saying no should be considered as an unpolite way to manifest uninterest but, instead, a clear and honest way to value your time.

Delegating is not always easy but it is important to do it so you can focus on what needs your attention and what can be outsourced.

If you are not used to delegating activities to someone else it might be helpful to understand how much a task can be considered difficult or easy to delegate, to whom you can delegate it, how much money it would cost, and if it is the case to outsource it.

Ah, and start with the easiest task to delegate so you won’t be worried about its executions if the deadline is met, etc. Then you can, step by step, start delegating more difficult tasks.

Timeneye perfectly integrates with project management software such as Jira, Basecamp, Asana

Once you have integrated Timeneye with your project management tool, you can start assigning tasks to team members and, with Timeneye, it will be possible to divide them into phases and check the time they will take.

4. Clarity with a focus on communication

Handling a project with many phases while also coordinating the other teammates’ activities is not easy and it can also be quite confusing if there is a lack of communication.

Timeneye is a time tracking software that easily integrates with collaborative team apps such as Microsoft Teams, Google Gmail, and Microsoft To Do

Integrating Timeneye to Microsoft Teams allows you to organize meetings, and workshops and chat with colleagues while the time gets tracked and stored in the cloud. After a meeting on Teams, you migrate with your team to Microsoft To Do, you can now assign tasks and, when completed, check them off!

Integrating Timeneye to Gmail helps the user to track and save the time spent while answering emails (and for some of us this activity might take more than one hour!).

Your time is precious, especially the one you spend communicating with your colleagues!

5. Create a routine

Creating a routine means being flexible. I know, I know, it seems contradictory but trusts me, it is not.

When you focus on an activity every day, approximately at the same time, and you write it down in the calendar, your teammates expect you to contact them around that time in case you are working on something common.

This implies that you will receive immediate feedback and you will be able to go on or change direction before it is too late!

It takes discipline to put in agenda, every day at a certain time, a project activity but it also takes flexibility to expect to receive sooner feedback with the possibility to change everything from a to z.

Timeneye helps you create a routine thanks to the so-called Suggested Entries. An Entry is a section in the workspace where the time data gets stored and it is possible to export it in detailed timesheets.
Your Timeneye web app starts to learn from your entries addressing your activities to a daily routine and, in this way, it makes pop up a suggestion in your calendar dashboard.

In case you do not want Timeneye helping you out with Suggested Entries you can easily modify them from the Register Time dialog.

6. Focusing on a single task and not relying on multitasking.

When we talk about good time management skills we usually think that multitasking might be the best, achievable way to get more done in less time. But it is not like that!

Focusing on many activities, also very different from each other, at the same time might be confusing and distracting.

Our brain is at its greatest capacity when focused on one single thing and getting it done.

 Timeneye helps you do so thanks to the possibility to split a project into phases and keep an eye on each of them.

7. Stress management

When we talk about productivity and effective time management we tend to forget the importance of mental health and it has become quite common to hear the word “productivity close to the burnout one.

Handling a project is not easy, especially when we also have to manage or get along with other people’s work and a deadline is approaching.

It is important to take some breaks during your day and say no, as well as delegate tasks when something is not important. Get a coffee or a fresh glass of water, avoid looking at your phone and, if you get the chance, get outside for a little walk.

You can do it by booking some break slots on your Timeneye calendar so nobody will ask you for a brief call or, also, you will hesitate to do some other working activities with your brain off.

 Remember that to say no does not mean being unpolite; it means valuing your time!

8. Problem solving

Facing problems, we hope for your small ones, is part of the business.

Especially when you handle a complicated project for a particular client.

Usually, problems happen during chaotic moments, when activities seem to add up and deadlines approach.

Timeneye has been thought to ease the user’s working life thanks to automatic features such as email reminders, report automation, and budget threshold.

You can set email reminders in case a project’s phase is taking too long as you can also set a date on which you wish to receive your custom report with all of your time and project info.

When you open a project, you establish a budget that should be respected. When this does not happen, with Timeneye you get the chance to receive an alert that warns you that things are not exactly going as expected.

9. Avoiding perfectionism, prioritizing deadlines

It is important, even if the client did not mention it, to have a deadline even if it is just for yourself.

When you have clear in mind when a task needs to be done, you start properly managing your time, avoiding postponing the activity or indulging in unnecessary rework.

With Timeneye you can set a project deadline and receive an automatic email that reminds you to be aware of the deadline and not indulge in overdoing things around.

10. Take time off and rest

We already talked about the importance of resting in stress management.

Being productive does not mean work, work, and work but having the capacity to focus on work when it is time to do so and rest when our body and mind need it.

So shut your laptop down and take the time for yourself but before doing so, make your working life easier while being in control of your time.

Sign up for Timeneye and start your free 30-day trial!

Your time is priceless, take better care of it

Start managing your time in Timeneye with a 30-day trial.

Timeneye © 2021 DM Digital Software SRL - All Rights Reserved
DM Digital Software SRL - Viale Autodromo 206-210, 41126 Modena - Italy
VATID 03895390361 - REA MO-426608