Time Management


This talk is also available in Powerpoint version; the HTML version is given below.

Table of Contents

At this Talk
Introduction
Outline
One Good Thief is Worth Ten Good Scholars:
Why Time Management is Important
The problem is severe
Hear me now, Believe me Later...
Goals, Priorities, and Planning
The 80/20 Rule
Inspiration:
Planning
TO DO Lists
The four-quadrant TO DO list
Paperwork
My Office
Telephone
Reading Pile
Office Logistics
Scheduling Yourself
Learn to say No
Gentle Nos
Everyone has Good and Bad Times
Interruptions
Cutting Things Short
Time Journals
Using Time Journal Data:
Procrastination
Balancing Act
Avoiding Procrastination
Comfort Zones
Delegation
Delegation is not dumping
Challenge People
Sociology
Meetings
Technology
Randy's Magic E-Mail Tips

Care and Feeding of Advisors - Time Management Advice
Care and Feeding of Advisors - Life Advice
General Advice - Vacations
General Advice
Recommended Readings
Action Items
Appendix


Time Management

by Randy Pausch
Carnegie Mellon University
http://www.randypausch.com
pausch@cmu.edu

 

At this talk you will learn to:

A red star:  = really important point

 

"Remember that time is money"

Benjamin Franklin 1748
Advice to a Young Tradesman

 

Introduction

Outline

One Good Thief is Worth Ten Good Scholars


Time Management for Teachers, Cathy Collins, Parker Publishing Company, 1987

CareerTrack Seminar: Taking Control of Your Work Day 1990

Why Time Management is Important

 

The Problem is Severe

By some estimates, people waste about 2 hours per day.  Signs of time wasting: .

 

Hear me now, Believe me Later...

 

Goals, Priorities, and Planning

 

The 80/20 Rule

 

Inspiration

"If you can dream it, you can do it" 

                                                Walt Disney

 

Planning

 

TO DO Lists

The Four-Quadrant TO DO list 

From: The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People: Restoring the Character Ethic, by Stephen R. Covey, Simon and Schuster, 1989.

Can be viewed via PPT version

Paperwork

Images of Randy's Office and What is on his Desk

  Randy's Desk 

 

  3 monitor workstation

 

  Randy's Stage 3 lab 

Example of TODO list (on one of the 3 screens)

 

 

Example of email inbox (on one of the 3 screens)

 

Example of Randy's Calendar program (on one of the 3 screens)

 

  Close up of work space

 

Close up of Phone:   Speaker phone:  hands are free to do something else; stress reduction while on hold

 

Return address stamper

 

Tissues

Thank you cards. 

 

Recycle paper box

 

Post-it Notes, Pad and Pens

 

OUT boxex

Image of Randy's Assistant's office.  She uses all available horizontal space about an arm's length away.  This allows her not to stack papers/files on top of each other and lose them.

 

Telephone

 

Reading Pile

 

Office Logistics

 

Scheduling Yourself

 

Learn to say No

 

Gentle Nos

 

Everyone has Good and Bad Times

 

Interruptions

 

Cutting Things Short

 

Time Journals

 

Using Time Journal Data

 

Procrastination

"Procrastination is the thief of time" 

Edward Young
Night Thoughts, 1742

 

Balancing Act

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion"

Parkinson's Law
Cyril Parkinson, 1957

Avoiding Procrastination

 

Comfort Zones

 

Delegation

 

Delegation is not dumping

 

Challenge People

 

Sociology

 

Meetings

 

Technology

 

Randy's Magic E-Mail Tips

 

Care and Feeding of Advisors: Time management Advice

 

Care and Feeding of Advisors:  Life Advice 

 

General Advice:  Vacations

General Advice

 

Recommended Readings

Action Items

 

Time Management

Randy Pausch
Carnegie Mellon University
http://www.randypausch.com
pausch@cs.cmu.edu

 

Appendix

 

The Seven Habits

From: The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People: Restoring the Character Ethic, by Stephen R. Covey, Simon and Schuster, 1989.

1. BE PROACTIVE. Between stimulus and response in human beings lies the power to choose. Productivity, then, means that we are solely responsible for what happens in our lives. No fair blaming anyone or anything else.

2. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND. Imagine your funeral and listen to what you would like the eulogists to say about you. This should reveal exactly what matters most to you in your life. Use this frame of reference to make all your day-to-day decisions so that you are working toward your most meaningful life goals.

3. PUT FIRST THINGS FIRST. To manage our lives effectively, we must keep our mission in mind, understand what's important as well as urgent, and maintain a balance between what we produce each day and our ability to produce in the future. Think of the former as putting out fires and the latter as personal development.

4. THINK WIN/WIN. Agreements or solutions among people can be mutually beneficial if all parties cooperate and begin with a belief in the "third alternative": a better way that hasn't been thought of yet.

5. SEEK FIRST TO BE UNDERSTANDING, THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD. Most people don't listen. Not really. They listen long enough to devise a solution to the speaker's problem or a rejoinder to what's being said. Then they dive into the conversation. You'll be more effective in your relationships with people if you sincerely try to understand them fully before you try to make them understand your point of view.

6. SYNERGIZE. Just what it sounds like. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. In practice, this means you must use "creative cooperation" in social interactions. Value differences because it is often the clash between them that leads to creative solutions.

7. SHARPEN THE SAW. This is the habit of self-renewal, which has four elements. The first is mental, which includes reading, visualizing, planning and writing. The second is spiritual, which means value clarification and commitment, study and meditation. Third is social/emotional, which includes service, empathy, synergy and intrinsic security. Finally, the physical element includes exercise, nutrition and stress management.

Tips for Working in Groups

By Randy Pausch, for the Building Virtual Worlds course at Carnegie Mellon, Spring 1998

Meet people properly.  It all starts with the introduction.  Then, exchange contact information, and make sure you know how to pronounce everyoneĂs names.  Exchange phone #s, and find out what hours are acceptable to call during.

Find things you have in common.   You can almost always find something in common with another person, and starting from that baseline, itĂs much easier to then address issues where you have differences.  This is why cities like professional sports teams, which are socially galvanizing forces that cut across boundaries of race and wealth.  If nothing else, you probably have in common things like the weather.

Make meeting conditions good.  Have a large surface to write on, make sure the room is quiet and warm enough, and that there arenĂt lots of distractions.  Make sure no one is hungry, cold, or tired.  Meet over a meal if you can; food softens a meeting.  ThatĂs why they ˘do lunch÷ in Hollywood.

Let everyone talk.  Even if you think what theyĂre saying is stupid.  Cutting someone off is rude, and not worth whatever small time gain you might make.  DonĂt finish someoneĂs sentences for him or her; they can do it for themselves.  And remember: talking louder or faster doesnĂt make your idea any better.

Check your egos at the door.  When you discuss ideas, immediately label them and write them down.  The labels should be descriptive of the idea, not the originator: ˘the troll bridge story,÷ not ˘JaneĂs story.÷

Praise each other.  Find something nice to say, even if itĂs a stretch.  Even the worst of ideas has a silver lining inside it, if you just look hard enough.  Focus on the good, praise it, and then raise any objections or concerns you have about the rest of it.  

Put it in writing.  Always write down who is responsible for what, by when.  Be concrete.  Arrange meetings by email, and establish accountability.  Never assume that someoneĂs roommate will deliver a phone message. Also, remember that ˘politics is when you have more than 2 people÷ ű with that in mind, always CC (carbon copy) any piece of email within the group, or to me, to all members of the group.  This rule should never be violated; donĂt try to guess what your group mates might or might not want to hear about.

Be open and honest.  Talk with your group members if thereĂs a problem, and talk with me if you think you need help.  The whole point of this course is that itĂs tough to work across cultures.  If we all go into it knowing thatĂs an issue, we should be comfortable discussing problems when they arise -- after all, thatĂs what this course is really about. Be forgiving when people make mistakes, but donĂt be afraid to raise the issues when they come up,

Avoid conflict at all costs. When stress occurs and tempers flare, take a short break. Clear your heads, apologize, and take another stab at it.  Apologize for upsetting your peers, even if you think someone else was primarily at fault; the goal is to work together, not start a legal battle over whose transgressions were worse. It takes two to have an argument, so be the peacemaker.

Phrase alternatives as questions.  Instead of ˘I think we should do A, not B,÷ try ˘What if we did A, instead of B?÷  That allows people to offer comments, rather than defend one choice.


Randy Pausch
Human Computer Interaction Institute
School of Computer Science
School of Design
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
pausch@cs.cmu.edu