Faced with ever increasing demands on the limited time at his disposal, modern man sitting amidst a mountain of wealth and prosperity lives a life of worry, anxiety and dissatisfaction and often looks awards management gurus for solutions. Through this study, the researchers aim to gain deep understanding and insights into time- management and self- management, fascinating interplay between them and the broader Indian perspective on self-management.
These aspects of self management and self- development have long been pointed out and highlighted by Indian scriptures and great spiritual masters. Moreover, our Indian Pedant provides an exhaustive science of effective living by focusing on these aspects in subtle manner. It helps us to understand ourselves and the world. Introduction With the greater impact of rapid changes in globalization and internationalization of economic processes on organization performance, the importance of management efficiency for organization’s performance in modern society becomes obvious.
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Moreover, the managers’ performance quality is largely responsible for the success of these processes. However, all these management efficiency issues are tightly connected with their “time management”. In recent years, increased autonomy and responsibility at work coupled with increased pressure to carry out organizational activities as considerably affected life at the workplace. As a habit, procrastination constitutes part of a vicious cycle that increases time pressure. Even when employees are under pressure at work, they procrastinate.
Such, ‘pressure at work’ has led to expressions like time famine (Pepper, 1999) which points out the feeling of having too much to do when time to do it is not enough at all. Given the realities of the profession, ‘time management’ is identified as a major problem and thus its relevance to executives, professionals and employees in general, could be well estimated. During the last two decades, time management’ has received increasing research interest (Cleanness et al. , 2007) as there has been a growing recognition Of the importance Of time in Volvo.
V, No. 2, September 2012 – February 2013 116 the organizational contexts in all aspects. Many people suffer from time pressure and an increasingly fast pace of life and experience time management problems (Heisenberg et al. , 1982; Micromanage, 1984; Hawkins & Klaus, 1 997; Attachment et al. , 1999; Major et al. , 2002). Because of expanding global competition, increasing speed of telecommunications, and pressure to get one’s services and products to market, temporal issues are coming more and more important at work (Rowlocks & Yates, 2002).
Moreover in work contexts itself, just-in-time production systems (Jackson & Martin, 1996; Grahame, 2002) and expressions like time famine (Pepper, 1 999) illustrate current concerns of many employees to keep their deadlines and to deal with a growing workload. As many people experience time management problems, and suffer from interruptions, time pressure, faster changes at work, increasing job demands and an increasingly fast pace of life (e. G. , Heisenberg et al. , 1982; McCullough, 1984, Hawkins & Klaus, 1997; Attachment et al. , 1999; Garnered, 2002; Major et al. 2002), the serious issue which emerges at this moment- “what can be done to deal with these challenges? ” must be addressed well. Now it has been duly realized that alongside with the employment of progressive work methods, arrangement of comfortable work place as well as work division and cooperation among the managers of various levels and functional areas, rational distribution of work time has become one of the important elements in manager’s work. Perhaps it is the only reason behind so much attention that has been recently voted to the management of manager’s work time and free time (White et al. 2003). In this context, Trucker (1997), Drag (2001 Hart-Hester (2003), White et al. (2003), and many others have analyses different aspects of manager’s work time. Basically, time management problems are common for many people (Heisenberg et al. , 1982; McCullough, 1984; Hawkins & Klaus, 1 997) and, not surprisingly, there is a large market for time management self- help books (e. G. , Mackenzie, 1997; Seizers, 2001). Now a days, people across all walks of life are tempted to see and go through time management literature.
Actually, research on ‘time management’ has been scarce, and researchers have focused mainly on individual differences (e. G. , Ex & Lacuna, 1 999; Cleanness, van Redder, Route & Roe, 2004) or diamagnetic training (e. G. , van Redder, 2003; Green & Skinner, 2005). Little has been done so far on the dynamics of the time management and the underlying causes behind the time famine. Interestingly, ‘time management’ contains one great paradox: No one has enough time- yet everyone has all there is. This paradox drives home the point that ‘time’ is not the problem; the problem is ‘how one utilizes the time’.
A Point to Look Upon The ways in which business organizations operate have been observed by many scholars and management gurus. Bennett (1910), an early writer on ‘time management’, provided practical advice on how one might live (as opposed to just existing) within the confines of 24 Volvo. V, No. 2, September 2012- February 2013 117 hours a day in his larger work entitled “How to Live on 24 Hours a Day”. He urged the large growing number of white-collar workers to seize their extra time and make the most of it to improve themselves.
He prescribed improvement measures such as reading great literature, taking an interest in he arts, reflecting on life and learning self-discipline that could be carried out during an extra time which could be found at the beginning of the day, by waking up early, and On the ride to work, On the way home from work, in the evening hours, and especially during the weekends. Regarding time as the most precious commodity, he further added that the old adage “Time is money” understates the matter, as time can often produce money, but money cannot produce more time.
Considering time as extremely limited, Bennett (1910) urged people to make the best use of the time available with them in their lives. Parkinson (1955) formulated the well- known Parkinson Law in The Economist as the first sentence of a humorous essay, one version of which states, Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion. Parkinson simple and humorous observation is an undeniable and stark truth today. Simply working for long and longer hours is not a way to cope with the ever increasing complexities of life and work. Time, as a resource, is limited. Each of us has only 24 hours a day!
Trucker (1967) observes that time as a resource has three important characteristics. First, everything requires time. Whatever we do or say or think, requires time. Therefore, ‘time’ is the universal resource. Second, time is irreplaceable I. E. , it has no substitute. Most economic resources have some substitutes, some more than others. As example we can easily substitute saccharine for sugar, machines for labor, and many artificial products for natural substances and so on. But there is no such substitute for time. Third, the supply of time is truly limited. No matter how great the demand for time, the supply will not increase.
Yesterday’s supply was twenty-four hours and those twenty-four hours are gone forever. However, here Henry Ford pointed out that time waste differs from material waste in that there can be no salvage. One cannot manufacture, mine or harvest time. In the language Of economics, ‘the supply of time” is completely ‘inelastic’. So, in this context, the relevance of time and its management to all could be well estimated. The aim of this article is to investigate and analyze factors influencing managers’ time management, and gain deep understanding and insights into it with Indian perspective.
Time- Management: Making the Best Use of Time Time management has been viewed and analyses from different perspectives y various researchers. The first step in using time more efficiently is to become aware of what wastes time. For improving time management in the workplace, one must safeguard one’s peak performance time, learn to say “No”, prioritize tasks kept for a day, delegate the work, consolidate and streamline tasks, and stop procrastinating (I. E. Time wasting activities need 118 to be eliminated). Additionally, if a job entails a variety of tasks, scheduling the week ahead helps keep it on track.
According to Liken (1973), time management involves determining needs, setting goals to achieve the needs, irritating the tasks required, matching tasks to time and resources through planning, scheduling and making lists, and keeping to the schedule. Considering some unusual characteristics of time, Porter (1978) pointed out three principles of time management: (I) Know where your time is being spent. (ii) Make a time diagnosis and determine those activities that are essential to your job, those that may not be essential and may be eliminated, those things you can do more effectively and those activities that you can delegate. Iii) Plan your time to include setting aside sufficient blocks of time o do effectively those things you have planned. Peter Trucker (1966) in his book. ‘The Effective Executive’, states this: “Effective executives, in my observation, do not start with their tasks. They start with their time. And they do not start out with planning. They start by finding out where their time actually goes. Then they attempt to manage their time and to cut back unproductive demands on their time. Finally they consolidate their ‘discretionary’ time into the largest possible continuing units. Trucker (1966) pointed out that time management is based on the assumption that cording, managing, and consolidating time may help a person deal efficiently with his or her time. According to Gonzalez (1987), “the object of time management is using time effectively. This objective must be achieved by managing interruptions, controlling crises, and practicing prevention. Although our time is affected by those around us, we alone can control what we do with our time. Crises must be controlled and interruptions must be managed to minimize the impact of those things that are beyond our control. Mackenzie (1974) elaborated on time management strategy made p Of a combination Of 20 tactics or principles, some Of the prominent are: time analysis, anticipation, planning flexibility, objective and priority setting, imposition of deadlines and exercise of self- discipline, generation of viable alternative solutions, consolidation, concentration of effort, delegation, control of interruptions, periodic feedback, brevity, maintenance of visibility of things or tasks, and minimization of routine tasks of low value and selective avoidance of information of low value.
Stripling (1986) elaborated on time management techniques with a two-step recess: (1) set personal goals and (2) eliminate time wasters. The important first step in time management is to set goals, with a plan of action and deadlines for each. The second step in time management is to eliminate or reorganize tasks that cause you to waste time. You encounter time wasters every day. Some cause the routine, immediate tasks to fill your day, others deprive you of time to work on your long-range goals.
Identify what wastes your time and begin work on one immediate and one long-range time waster As you succeed in eliminating or modifying those, pick others, until you have eliminated your worst time wasters in both categories. Topper (2003) pointed out that while we can’t control what is Volvo. V, No. 2, September 2012 – February 2013 119 happening nationally, we can gain some control in the workplace by effectively managing our time.
For managing time effectively, she advised to (I) overcome procrastination, (ii) keep office visitors from over staying their welcome, (iii) do best work in the hour of one’s biological peak times and schedule difficult tasks accordingly, (iv) plan regular and uninterruptible hour I. E. “quiet time” to work on complex projects, (v) save the last five minutes of one’s day to review “to-do list”, and finally, (vi) reward oneself for achieving each step toward a goal. Basically, ‘time management’ is not about time per SE; it is about our lives, what we do with the time given to us.
Those who generally complain of the lack of time are, usually, people who make the worst use of time. They really need to look upon this subtlest aspect of managing and making effective use of time. Franklin (1986) coined the phrase ‘time is money and emphasized the importance of planning and priorities. In this context, he narrated eloquently, “If one wants to enjoy one of the greatest luxuries in life, the usury of having enough time, time to rest, time to think things through, time to get things done and know if one has done them to the best of one’s ability, remember there is only one way.
Take enough time to think and plan things in the order of their importance. Life will take on a new zest, and it will add years to one’s life and more life to one’s years. Let all things have their places”. Moreover, according to Trucker (1967), the major problem is fundamentally the confusion between effectiveness and efficiency which stands between doing the right things and doing things right. He pointed out hat there is surely nothing quite so useless as doing with greater efficiency what should not be done at all.
Moran (1978) – Successful managers are those who use their time on the high- priority items that will bring them the biggest pay back. The unsuccessful managers are those who typically get mired down in meaningless detail or issues outside the organization’s main objectives. Time Management: Does it pay? Studies carried out by McCann (1994), and Barbing et al. (1996) pointed out that effective time management is clearly a factor in job performance and this way it contributes to an organization’s profitability.
On the other hand, poor time management has been associated with high stress and strain (e. G. McCann et al. , 1990; Schuler, 1979; Lang, 1992; Ex & Lacuna, 1999), emotional exhaustion (e. G. Peters & Route, 2005), and health issues (e. G. Bond & Feather, 1988). Weldon, Jean and Piranha (1991) and Janice & Barter (2003) found that engaging in time management, particularly planning behaviors, can also contribute positively to group performance. Effective time management in the workplace increases productivity, helps institution meet its goals, and promotes teamwork.
Time management training can reduce ratiocination and worry (van Redder, 2003) and use of time management techniques is correlated with job performance and satisfaction (Cleanness et al. , 2004). Works of Bond and Feather (1988), Ions and Sager (2003), and peters and 120 Route (2005) found the direct impact of time management behavior on well- being. Ions and Sager (2003) reported significant correlations between (a) goal setting, proportioning, and the use of time-related mechanics as different aspects of time management behavior and (b) emotional exhaustion of salespeople.
Kelly (2003) showed a contrary result that time management behavior was unrelated to worry in a student sample. McCann et al. (1990), Britton and Tester (1991 Content (1 996), and Ions and Sager (2003) explored the direct impact of time management behavior on employees’ performance. Overall, results of these studies indicated positive effects of time management behavior on performance. How does it work? While proposing a process model of time management, McCann (1994) indicated that the relation between time management and outcomes such as tension, performance, and job satisfaction is mediated by the control of time.
That is, time management s not a direct antecedent of performance but it may help a person to experience Structure and to obtain feelings Of control, which eventually would affect performance and satisfaction positively and reduce tension and stress reactions. However, as hypothesized, Heaper and Stock (2010) found that time management training led to an increase in perceived control of time and a decrease in perceived stress whereas it had no impact on different performance indicators.
The Time-Management Matrix by Covey The most successful and well-known modern writer on this subject of time management is Stephen R. Covey. In his enormously popular book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey (1989) advocates a comprehensive system of personal development in which time management is talked of as playing a central role. Here, Covey has presented a time management matrix. It is not enough to be busy. We must ask ourselves: what are we busy about? This is the question the time management matrix answers. Flag. The Time Management Matrix (Covey, 1 989) Source: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Covey (1989) 121 As part of the fourth generation of management, Covey (1989) diagrammed time management matrix. As per this urinary, we spend time in one of the four ways. According to him, an activity can be defined in terms of two factors: urgent and important. Urgent means it’s “Now! ” and it requires immediate attention. Urgent things act on us. Urgent matters are usually visible, they press on us, they insist on action, and they’re usually right in front of us.
Often they are popular with others, and they are pleasant, easy, and fun to do. But so often they are unimportant! Importance, on the other hand, has to do with results. If something is important, it contributes to your mission, your values, your high priority goals. We generally react to urgent matters. Important matters that are not urgent require more initiative, more proactively. We must act to seize opportunity, to make things happen. Four kinds of activities come into consideration on the basis of these two factors- urgent and important.
In Quadrant l, we have all those activities that are both important and urgent, like crisis, deadlines and emergencies. In Quadrant II, we put everything that is important but not urgent, such as self- development issues like physical exercises, learning and meditation. These activities are most closely linked to your ultimate values and goals in fife, but are Often also most ignored. Quadrant Ill contains urgent but not important activities like certain meetings, most phone calls, interruptions and so on.
These are not really relevant to our values and goals but even so, they have to be dealt with as they arise. And then some people waste time doing things neither urgent nor important. Gossiping, aimless internet browsing, playing video games or reading newspapers-?all such time wasters are in Quadrant IV. Moran (1978) pointed out that biggest time wasters are interruptions, inefficient meetings, indecisiveness, fear of being wrong or embarrassed, fire fighting, ineffective legation, and wrong emphasis on priorities. Managers generally spend time on tasks disproportionately to their value.
Real personal growth comes by concentrating maximum time and energy in Quadrant II activities (important but Not Urgent’). Unfortunately, Quadrants l, Ill and IV consumes your time and energy leaving little time and scope for quadrant II activities. The only way one can get time and energy for doing the important and fulfilling Quadrant II activities is by reducing the other quadrants. The crisis in Quadrant I have to be faced and hence one cannot reduce this area immediately. According to Gonzalez (1 987), despite efforts in planning and controlling time, unexpected crises arise which must be ‘controlled’.
A tremendous amount of energy is expended in dealing with even a minor crisis. Allocate time to think about a problem and channel your energy to find solutions by developing and Volvo. V, No. 2, September 2012 – February 201 3 122 maintaining a plan of action to deal with the crisis in stride. Looking at Quadrant Ill, Gonzalez (1987) stated that minor interruptions can be dimensioning if interruptions are not kept in perspective and the cause of the interruption is not dealt with immediately. When interrupted, you must set a time limit and stick with it as much as possible.
When people ask for a minute, tell them that they can have five, but not more. Recognizing that a certain diplomacy is necessary in an office environment, you must explain them about your other priorities, avoid showing annoyance, and give the interrupter your undivided attention. This leads the interrupter to get to the point immediately. Some managers tend to use interruptions as an excuse to procrastinate. You cannot react to interruptions by complaining or taking a break. It is important to get back on track after interruptions and not lose the momentum built before the interruption.
One has to look to Quadrants Ill and IV, try to extract the time sucked into activities which are only apparently useful or those which are plainly useless, and manage such interruptions. The matrix points out towards distinguishing between importance and urgency. Markova (2011) stated that one of the organizational root cause behind waste of time is lack of differentiation Beethoven levels of urgency. In the same context, van Redder (2003) indicated that time management training consists of two basic steps that resemble the two phases of goal setting and goal striving.
Firstly, the individual is encouraged to identify routines and habits, and develop an increased awareness of which goals are personally valuable and of how he or she currently uses time to attain these goals. Secondly, the person is guided to prioritize these goals, plan out how to attain them, and self- monitor the use of time. Often urgency masquerades as importance. Once one identifies and isolates important activities (those which are truly relevant to one’s ultimate goals and values in life), one has to devote more and more time to them. Quadrant II highlights the importance of planning or organizing and practicing revelation.
With the many demands facing each of us, it is easy to throw up our hands and say, “I just don’t have the time! ” The question really is not whether you have enough time, but how you will spend the time you already have. You must learn to: diagnose time, arrange all tasks, and implement a plan to complete tasks on a timely basis. According to Gonzalez (1987), it is difficult to manage time effectively without establishing your own strategic defense initiative screen. By organizing your office, you can communicate subliminally that your office is a functional workplace, not a hangout.
Moreover, in performing one’s job, plan your schedule carefully to prevent wasted time. According to Moran (1978) in organizational context, perhaps one of the most misunderstood practices in time management is delegation. Delegation does not mean giving subordinates those assignments that we consider distasteful or not of any real significance. Rather, meaningful delegation of responsibility provides an opportunity for subordinates to grow in their jobs and gain greater satisfaction, while at the same time freeing the manager to tackle other important issues. This implies that Volvo. V, No. 2,
September 201 2 – February 2013 123 a manager must maintain a dialogue with his or her subordinates, and must be aware of their competencies and skills, so that they can readily take on the delegated assignments. Moreover, Moran (1978) pointed out the reason why managers’ priorities are not consistent with their objectives and plans is that their goals are not clearly defined. For managers to make the best use of their time, they must have clear-cut organizational goals, as well as life goals. Without this kind of goal-setting and planning, managers’ time becomes nothing more than isolated behavior without direction.
As part of time management practices, Moran (1978) also stated that managers must keep a daily log of their time for a week or two to determine how they, indeed, spend their time. In this way they can isolate their time wasters: Anything from drop-in visitors and telephone interruptions to procrastination should be logged. Moreover, managers should define what short term and long-range goals they are trying to attain. On a daily basis they should list the activities needed to accomplish those aims so they will be in a better position to reveal any efforts that don’t lead in that direction.
For listing hose relevant daily activities, any commercial appointment book could be suitable. Effective time management is not a preoccupation with time urgency or with efficiently maintaining an appointment book, it calls for applying one’s time intelligently in the accomplishment of the organization’s goals (Moran, 1978). Once managers are receptive to changing their time-management practices and the organization backs them, they can take the practical measures that have a good chance of enhancing effective time management. Justas moment! But here arises another problem.
Even after identifying your Quadrant II and solving to concentrate there, one finds her/ himself unable to find the motivation to follow through. Now a days, time management classes, books, websites, and tools are multiplying like rabbits in a meadow. People are devoting more and more time to training and adoption of new techniques and in the end, they find nothing conclusive and substantial. The fact is that time management training is stunningly ineffective. Unfortunately time management tools do not make people more organized or productive any more than to give them a hammer and saw in order to turn them carpenters.
English (1989) stated that many popular diamagnetic ideas are simply not realistic. Keeping ” to do” lists and pasting little yellow stick- mums all over the place are often found ineffective. The simplest reason behind this is “habituation,” the process whereby people have a lessening sensitivity to stimuli. Why do we lose the flavor of food after a few bites? Our taste receptors get used to it! Why is the bed at home more comfortable than the one in the hotel that costs much? Because we are used to the lumps. Why do we fail to notice the lists and reminders?