When some people hear the phrase time management they associate it with stereotypes like robotic behavior or an obsession with ‘to do’ lists. It often falls into a productivity measure.
Listed below are three myths regarding organization and time management that I notice in training on this topic.
Myth 1: YOU CAN SAVE TIME: We hear people say, “let’s do it this way and save some time.” A code phrase for getting more done. Unfortunately, we can’t save time. We’ve only got 24 hours in a day, no matter how you slice it. You can wish and hope for more but it doesn’t work that way. You can even choose whether to use your time positively or negatively – but there is no option for saving. Napoleon knew this; he responded to one of his general’s requests by saying, “I can give you anything but time.”
Myth 2: MY SUPERIORS WASTE MY TIME: We have all had experiences whereby we were directed to tasks that we felt were not value added. But, the research clearly illustrates that the vast majority of our time wasters result from our own poor habits or lack of focus. Procrastination, inability to say “no“, the cluttered desk, and ineffective delegation are just a few examples of how we waste our time. So take a close look at your habits (especially the poor ones) to be become more effective.
Myth 3: TIME MANAGEMENT MAKES YOU INFLEXIBLE: We have all met people who take habits, whether eating properly or physical conditioning, to an extreme. That said, it doesn’t make the effort wrong. The fact is that implementation of time and organizational principles make you more effective. When you’re more effective, it releases time for creativity and joy. If we view time management as only “getting more done” we fail to understand that the organized and focused individual is more capable of involvement in value added opportunities as opposed to just getting more done.
In summary, time management skills allow one to volunteer, spend more time with family, or pursue their hobbies. After all, we only have 24 hours in a day and even those hours are not guaranteed.
Dr. Hackett attended public schools in his native state, Oklahoma. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1967 with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance. After he felt the call of the classroom, he returned to the University of Oklahoma as a NDEA fellow and received his Ph.D. in Marketing and Management. In 1973, he joined the faculty of the W. Frank Barton School of Business at Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas, as a Professor of Marketing.