So you have aced the interview and got the job! Amazing! But what about when you actually start work? Here are five ways to make sure that you are clued up in managing your time in the workplace.
1. Aim to arrive at work at least ten minutes before your start time.
Arriving at work on time is fine, but allowing yourself a little bit of time in the morning to hang up your coat, load up your computer, make a cup of coffee etc. means that you can get started on your daily tasks at the time that you start work. It also means that your day plan (see item 2) will be more in synch.
2. Create a plan at the beginning of your day.
It is always a good idea to make a day plan at the beginning of each day to avoid getting overwhelmed by tasks. The best way of doing this is to divide your day into one hour blocks and designate each task accordingly. If you come across a task that will take longer than an hour to complete, it could be worth dividing the task up throughout the day so that it will maintain your full attention prior to completion (obviously deadline permitting). If you try your best to stick to your plan throughout the day then you will find it easier to meet your deadlines and leave work feeling happy and stress-free.
TOP TIP: When creating your day plan, try to leave yourself an extra half an hour of free time. This will allow for any unexpected occurrences throughout your day and will help to make sure that you don’t fall behind with your tasks.
3. Be strict with yourself on your lunch break.
This may sound like an obvious one, but it is important to make sure that you have returned from your lunch break and are back at your desk within the allocated time that you have been given (if you are not sure about how long you have for lunch – check with your employer as this can vary from place to place). As well as being unprofessional (and could even result in a disciplinary action from your employer), coming back from your lunch late will mean that you are automatically behind on your tasks for the day, and will increase your chances of being overwhelmed with them later on in the day.
TOP TIP: It is a good idea to set yourself an alarm on your phone for five minutes before your lunch break ends. This means that, even if you lose track of time, you will be reminded of what time you have to be back at your desk.
4. Keep on top of your email inbox.
If you are working in an office, chances are you will be provided with your own work email address. It is important to reply to any emails as promptly as possible (preferably within a couple of hours) and to keep track of what emails you have replied to. Keeping on top of your emails means that you will be more time efficient when responding to email queries and means that you will avoid having to have a mass inbox clear out in the future (this can take a few hours).
TOP TIP: It is a good idea to create extra folders in your inbox so that you can organise your emails effectively. This will save time when you need to find a specific email or sender.
5. Tidy up your work space at the end of the day.
It should only take a couple of minutes and can save you a wealth of time the next morning! Leaving your work space neat and tidy ready for when you return to work will make it easier for you to find things in the morning and will keep your employer happy.
TOP TIP: For any documents and paperwork that you keep on your desk, use a file or ring binder to keep them tidy and in order.