A manager has many responsibilities they need to carry out. The first one is to ensure that your team is on track and delivering the work that is required of them.
Part of being able to carry out these managerial tasks is having good time management skills. The way a manager uses their time can great impact those they manage.
Poor time use can cause a ripple effect within the team, leading to frustration, poor performance and job resignations. Here are top ways managers can be more time efficient and improve morale and productivity.
Ask for weekly emails of pending approvals
Managers can be busy and overworked, and like many of us when we are overworked, it can be easy for minor, as well as important items to slip through the cracks. You may have your own way of managing your tasks and what needs attending to, but just in case you may have missed something, ask for your team to send you a weekly dot point email of pending approvals.
This will save you time from asking each individual team member, interrupting their workflow. However, if your team knows that every Monday morning, they can send you a few bullet points about items that are waiting for your feedback on, the whole approval process can run a lot smoother and quicker.
Set aside dedicated approval time
If a manager is slow to respond to items from their team that need their edits, reviews or approvals, this can slow down the entire project from top to bottom. Being on top of approvals is a key part of being a good manager.
A good way to ensure you are making the time for this is to set aside a specific time each day where you do nothing but tend to items that need your input.
Once you get into this habit and your team knows this, they will know to get items to you that need attention before this time. Having clearly set timeframes always helps with any project, as well as your own time management system.
Use an internal communications platform
As teams expand, communication can become difficult between individuals, individual teams and any new interns. This can lead to poor time management among managers and their teams. Rather than spend time following up each individual, organising long group meetings or sorting through email trails, get a communications system that allows for streamlined internal communications.
There are systems that can be used for free, such as Ryver, that allow all your communications to be allocated to open forums or tailored groups. On such a system, everybody can be in the loop on what is being said about a particular project.
Give your employees direction
Every individual has a different style of working. As a manager it’s important for you to adapt to each individuals working style in order to get the best out of them. However, managers are workers too, and also have their unique working style that suits them best.
Let your team know how best to communicate with you if they require matters urgently attended to or how you like to respond to particular requests. If your employee is willing to work in a style more suited to you, then you will in turn get more work done.
However, your team aren’t mind readers. You can’t expect them to know how you want to be communicated with. Ensure you take the time to expressly tell your team how you like email best or that a phone call is the best for an urgent matter.
A good part of being a manager is being a time effecient manager. Waiting for approvals and feedback is one element that can really slow a project down. It can also impact staff morale and their productivity. If they are doing all the work, and need your consent to go on to the next phase, yet they need to wait days to weeks for this, it’s going to cause friction.
Remember, in order to manage your time as a manager more efficiently, ask for a weekly dot point email of pending items from your team, set aside time dedicated to approving and reviewing work, use a communications platform if required and let your employees know the best way to communicate with you. All of these elements combined will make you a happier and time efficient manager, which your team will also benefit from.