Why are there so many different organizational systems and time management methods out there? The answer is simple: it’s like any other personal challenge, like weight loss or money management. There is no simple, one size fits all answer. You must build a solution that works for you.

Over the course of this two-day workshop, we will explore various time management and organizational tools and techniques so that you can build a customized productivity plan for your personal and professional lives. At the end of the course, you will emerge with a plan that works for you, so that you can start regaining control of your life!

During this workshop, you will teach participants:

  • What personal efficiency is, what skill sets can improve personal productivity, and what attitudes they should cultivate
  • Why multi-tasking is a myth
  • What role long-term goals play in short-term efficiency
  • How to set a personal vision and develop dreams and goals from it
  • The 80/20 rule and how it should affect planning
  • The characteristics of a good organizational system
  • A plan for an efficient workspace, including a customized information center and a filing system
  • A system that will allow you to process any type of information that crosses your desk, including e-mail, electronic files, paper files, voice mail, text messages, and drop-in visitors
  • How to use the Eisenhower principle to prioritize work
  • Ways of saying no
  • How routines can simplify their lives
  • How to identify why they procrastinate and methods for tackling tasks
  • Tools to make their household more productive and efficient

Introduction and Course Overview

You will spend the first part of the day getting to know participants and discussing what will take place during the workshop. Students will also have an opportunity to identify their personal learning objectives.

Understanding Personal Efficiency

To start, participants will explore what personal productivity means to them and others, and what it might feel like. We’ll also discuss how personal productivity is similar to (and different from) basic time management.

 Developing the Right Attitude

This session will give participants some useful attitudes to cultivate and some skills that they might want to work on. You will also discuss why multi-tasking is a myth.

 Laying the Foundation

Your daily and weekly task lists are in fact only the tip of your personal to-do list. This session will show participants how to create a strong foundation for their daily plan: a vision statement, dreams, and goals.

 The Building Blocks of a Good Organizational System

After the lunch break, participants will brainstorm a list of characteristics of a good organizational system. You will also explore Pareto’s principle, also known as the 80/20 rule.

 Creating the Right Environment

This session will focus on how to purge a workspace, design it for efficiency, and re-organize it. We will also introduce our filing system and our daily information management system: the incubator.

 Setting up your Virtual Environment

Next, we will take a closer look at organizing electronic files and e-mail.

Setting up Your Information Management Center

Day Two will begin with an overview of the four components of an information management center: calendar, tasks lists, communications log, and projects notebook. To reinforce learning, participants will review three case studies and then create their own.

 Managing Information in Six Easy Steps

This session will introduce the GOPHER model of handling information. Participants will then apply the knowledge to a case study.

 Prioritizing Your Tasks

Next, participants will learn how to prioritize work with the Eisenhower principle, also known as the urgent-important matrix.

 Saying No

In this session, participants will explore different ways of saying no.

 Creating Routines

Participants will discover the importance of routine through an exercise and a large group discussion.

 Stopping Procrastination Now (Not Later!)

This session will give participants some ways to tackle those tasks that they have been putting off. Participants will also complete a Challenge to Change.

 Applying Our Lessons at Home

The final session of this workshop will give participants to organize key areas at home, including chores, exercise, and meals.

Workshop Wrap-Up

At the end of the day, students will have an opportunity to ask questions and fill out an action plan.