In the world of work, time management skill is a must!

William Penn once said, “Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” Our expectations on how we utilise time “wisely” vary, and unfortunately, people sometimes can’t distinguish between “busy-ness” and “productivity”.

Richard R Covey suggested what is popularly known as urgent versus important matrix to determine how we are to prioritise our tasks and how much of our time should be spent on those. I am providing Covey’s matrix below:

One of the ways by which we can adopt this matrix is by putting a list of our activities into the box where we think matches the descriptions. For example, filing papers is important but not urgent. Reading emails at the start of the day is probably important and urgent for some people, while it may be urgent but not as important to other people.

Further to using this matrix in tracking our use of time, we can also look into deciding which activities belong to “obligatory time” versus “discretionary time.” Obligatory means these are activities that we must do as it is time committed to others. Discretionary time is time that we can manage or control. We can categorise whether an activity is obligatory or discretionary and then we can start deciding on whether it