Time management

To enable me to find out how I can make better use of my time I completed a log of everything I did for one week. I included everything from eating to, working and even sleeping. I found this very interesting to do and found some things quite surprising, such as I find myself traveling 13hours a week some weeks I think could be more. From keeping this log it gave me the opportunity to organize my time a bit better. As stated on www. mindtools. com “Time Management skills are essential for successful people”. Before starting my Log for the week I planned my week ahead.

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This plan was completely different to what I actually did throughout the week. I found that I was suited better if I planned my time each day and set myself a goals or a set of goals to achieve by the end of the day. Stated on www. mindtools. com “The process of setting goals and targets allows you to choose where you want to go in life. ” Setting myself small goals helped me to complete assignments and get them in by there deadlines and manage my time effectively. When analyzing my time log for the week I also found there were some things that I had to give priority to, such as going to work.

I had to give priority to work as I had not got much money but this was an important and not urgent task as I didn’t need the money for anything particular and could have spent more time doing research for forthcoming assignments. Prioritizing tasks can be very useful by categorizing tasks into urgency and importance you are more likely to get them done and also gives you an opportunity to control time and not waste it. (Wolf, 2003) Overall from doing my time log and starting to plan out my days had enabled me to use my time more effectively. Eventhough something always crops up and ruins the routine or plans for the day.

Usually when being disturbed I can never get back on track but I will be able to improve on this by having stronger will power to just get on with the task I am doing. Working in a Group with new people was a great experience as I got to make new friends. Because my group all had different lectures schedules it was very difficult to find a time to meet up. But we negotiated and found a time that suited all of us. The first meeting of the group was mainly just exchanging names and numbers so that we could all contact one another if we had any problems. From evidence shown for a group to be effective they must pass through 4 stages.

Our group quickly passed through the first two stages which as Marshall 1998 states are finding common ground and clarifying different roles. This happened in our first meeting as we all agreed that we would brainstorm to ‘generate as many ideas as possible’ (Mandel, 1993) We later decided that for the following week we would bring in all information gathered and choose the main topics for the presentation and each have individual roles to fulfill to produce a quality presentation. Problems arose the following week when 1 member of the group did not turn up.

As a group majority we decided that we would still dedicate individual roles but we would assign this member a part that would be fairly easy to research if she only came to a few of our group meetings. On our third meeting we decided that we would start our PowerPoint slides as we all thought OHT’s were expensive and PowerPoint looked more professional. To make out PowerPoint look professional we all did slides with a blank background and every member put the slides on to disk which I then took home a made the font, colour and the background the same style.

I was dedicated this task as I had used PowerPoint lots of times before and only had quite a small part in the presentation. An advantage of using PowerPoint is that we could switch quickly between slides and it would provide the presentation with a professional look by ‘using design templates’. (Mandel, 1993) After we had been put in our group and had arranged individual topics we had a new member to our group we all adapted quickly by assigning the member a topic and helping with the PowerPoint slides.

For the making of our group synopsis we decided that if we all wrote the main points of our part in the presentation down then 1 member of the group would be able to put this together as our handout. This went well and was achieved in 1 meeting. All of my group got along quite well and had similar interests but we came to find out that a disadvantage of being put in a group that you don’t know until you all meet up that there is always going to be 1 member of the group who is very unreliable but expects someone to have already done the work for them.

At group meetings sometimes it became like the Jerry Springer show as 1 member of the group wished to express their feelings about this person but as a group we all decided to get good grade we would do the research between us and give it the unreliable member on the day and hope they would get it right. Our presentation went well and in the end I was just glad that it was over and hope that the unreliable person would not be in my presentation group again!!

As a group I would say that we passed through all four stages of being an effective group as we found common ground with other members of the group, we then clarified our different role and we then achieved our outcomes by getting a good grade in the presentation. As for the fourth stage taken from Marshall 1998 “it is necessary to reflect on what the group has achieved” Most of the group who attended the feedback session spoke about what we could have added or what we could have changed to make the presentation more effective, mainly this was to get rid of unreliable people and to learn not to read off notes.

In general working in this group was a great experience and although there were a couple of unreliable members we worked very well. When looking back on the module as a whole I have found it quite interesting and quite surprising about some of the things that I do and the way I approach different tasks. At the beginning of the module when I id my learning style questionnaire I found out that I was a reflective learner, but I did not really agree with this as I didn’t consider myself to always carry out painstaking research but now I look back at past assignments I tend to agree.

I agree because I tend to look at many quotes from many different books before I use a quote or reference in my work. The lecture that I found the most useful was the one on how to search online journals such as BIDS. This helped me broaden my research for assignments as I was able to use a quote from a journal. I feel that I approached the tasks with some enthusiasm but the tasks which seemed not so useful were the presentation skills on PowerPoint and the use of WOLF.

I didn’t show much enthusiasm to these tasks as I already had knowledge of how to use PowerPoint and I had already done the module learning with I. T which had already gone over this. Eventhough I felt this way about these tasks I think that they would have been useful to people who hadn’t already done the I. T module or didn’t have any Knowledge of PowerPoint. The most valuable task that helped me with my studies was the time management task as it has helped me to think about how to plan out my day or even just to think about what tasks are due in when and what has priority over other tasks.

This helped me to be more time effective and has also helped me to stop stressing about the amount of tasks that are due in, in one period as I am able to break them down into priorities. From evidence shown on Wolf by becoming more effective in your use of working time, you can reduce stress by being more in control of what you do and enjoying what you do i?? as it gives more quality time to relax and enjoy life outside work.