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Improve Your Time Management and Productivity with this Simple Tip

By Edited Sep 4, 2015 2 8

Peachtree GA
The best advice I ever heard on time management was from Jim Rohn, one of America's most sought-after success counselors, who rose from humble beginnings to become a self-made millionaire by the age of 33. Mr. Rohn says, "You can always get more money, but you can never get more time."

If you wonder what he may have meant, consider that there are only 24 hours in a day. We lose nearly 8 of these hours sleeping. That leaves us with only 16 hours in which to do everything else: shower, commute, prepare meals, read,  shop, eat, play, and of course, work.
Here's my best advice for the hours you spend on the job: While you're at work, work.


When time is spent in non productive pursuits doing things which have little value, not only will you be viewed as a slacker, but you lose a sense of integrity. The days become long and boring.  If you're spending your valuable time walking the halls gossiping, playing Angry Birds or discussing last week's sports event, your work is most likely not getting done. 

If your job entails specialized tasks which only you can perform, no one else is likely to fill in the gaps if your work goes unfinished. That means you'll be the one who has to stay late and finish up after everyone else goes home to their family. No amount of overtime pay can ever replace the joy and fulfillment of watching your children grow while spending time with them.  

Mr. Rohn teaches that we don't get paid for the hour. We are paid for the value we bring to the hour. The more value we bring to the hour, the more we can potentially earn. While there are a lot of different ways to measure value, we might be a valuable parent, or a valuable Scout Troop leader, or a valuable church member, but in the workplace our value is measured in terms of money. How much money is your time worth?

If you had just a few months to live would you waste even a minute of your time on non-valuable activities? Probably not. It is a personal decision as to what is more important: your work or your family. If you waste time at work you're robbing your family of your time which might be better spent with your children or spouse.

Professional Office

I worked with a guy who arrived at the office about 20 minutes before everyone else. As the rest of us came in at 8 am, he would pointedly look at his watch and frown. It was his habit to tell everyone how early he had gotten to work. In fact, after the rest of us were already signed in and had begun our work day, he could still be heard strolling around our cubicles as he continued to socialize. This reminds me of another saying that makes good sense: Mere presence on the job does not indicate productivity. Often, people confuse activity with productivity; they're always busy. The question becomes, busy doing what?

In times like these, when employers are looking for reasons to cut staff, it behooves us to become known as valuable contributors. If we can identify a way to become more valuable to the workplace, our value will increase in terms of a paycheck or in staying when others are laid off. Learning a new skill or cross training can often lead to survival in the workplace, despite reorganizations and downsizing that is prevalent in today's work place.

Making ourselves more valuable not only increases our potential earning power, it builds self esteem and marketability. 



Jul 4, 2010 11:14am
I love this article. It should be required reading for every young person who is getting their first job. "While you are at work, work" is a slogan that should be part of every employee manual ... especially these days when there are so many office distractions, such as personal emails, texting, etc. Thanks for a well-written article!
Jul 4, 2010 1:15pm
Very nice article! Even the best of us need this reminder like this every now and then. Good to print out and keep near my work desk.
Jul 4, 2010 4:20pm
Deborah-Diane, thanks for your encouraging comments about this workplace article. It does get increasingly difficult to concentrate with all the gadgets that rob us of our time. Sometimes I long for the old days where we actually used pen and paper and opened our mail with a letter opener.
Jul 4, 2010 5:09pm
dadbintheadmin, Thank you for your positive comments about this article. You're probably not one of the ones who needs this advice from what I've read of you. Nice to know that you share these sentiments.
Jul 5, 2010 3:08am
Hey thinkwrite17; Wonderful quote: "You can always get more money, but you can never get more time." So true!! Great article!
Jul 5, 2010 9:55am
Introspective - Thanks! That's just one of the many incredible tips from Mr. Jim Rohn who is known as America's foremost business philosopher. His series on "How to Have Your Best Year Ever" is inspiring and useful. It's great to share with coworkers during a Lunch-n-Learn :-)
Sep 13, 2010 11:00pm
Great article! As precious as jobs are today, anyone who has a job should be reading and practicing the ideas in this article. Thanks for sharing.
Sep 14, 2010 8:17am
Southerengirl09 - With so many jobless workers we must be diligent in order to keep our jobs. Thanks for stopping by and for your comment.
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