How many of us ever sat waiting for a doctors or dentist appointment? Do we ever find our self with ten or fifteen minutes to spare between appointments? All these are common examples of transition time or dead time. These valuable extra chunks of time are often ‘transition’ because people think that they are too short for anything. Another example of transition time would be the time we spend on preparatory activities, such as washing or getting dressed up for going outside.
In order to utilize your transition time well, we must identify the situations of occurrence. According to expert most common example of transition times are:
- Going and coming back from work.
- Between arrival and starting work
- Between meetings
- Waiting for the people to arrive
- Waiting for appointments
- Lunch time (might be)
- Holidays (might be)
- During breakfast
- Evenings (might be)
Course of action for effectively use transition time is as follows:
There are two main steps involves in this process.
- Reduce unproductive time where possible.
Reduce Unproductive Time:
Before we decide what to do with our ‘spare’ time, we can examine if we can reduce unproductive time. Can we rearrange meetings so that we don’t have long waiting times between them? Can we find a quicker route to office? Reducing unproductive time gives us more time for doing things that really interest us or that area useful part of our working day.
This is an important skill that switches transition time into a useful part of our day. A simple example could illustrate this skill really easily. Consider a housewife in the morning, puts on the Kettle. While that is boiling she makes the toast. She gives the children their breakfast while she listens to the news or anything on the radio. At work we can use this skill in the same way. Listen to the news while dressing, or motivational audio programs while driving. Take important reports to you co-workers when you are both at a meeting, instead of making a separate arrangement for it tomorrow.
Transition time is not for dealing with main tasks of the day. It is useful for those smaller tasks which often pile up unless they take a disproportionate amount of your time. Your transition times might include longer travelling. All kinds of short projects may be adjusted into transition time.
10 Minutes Manager:
Many time slots only last for short periods, perhaps ten or fifteen minutes. It seems to be a huge task to utilize these short periods effectively. Here are some ideas of what we can do in a ten-minute slot that are useful and time saving:
- We can read a short article or report.
- We can read some official letters.
- We can write dictate a letter of memo.
- We can proofread some pages.
- We can prepare our daisy / schedule for next week.
- We can record our ideas about things.
- We can read / send E-mail.
- We can write short notes for a speech.
We cannot be able to work on a long-term project during transition time but we can do routine and low grade work. Make it sure that kind of work during dead time matches the quality of the time. Utilize this time for getting routine work done, so you can concentrate more on high grade tasks. Transition time can also be use to relax or take a little exercise. Don’t dismiss transition time as a period for thinking and consolidating your thoughts. Following tips will be very helpful in this regard:
- Identify your transition time
- Have a plan for it.
- Keep a folder of work ready.
- Don’t make two journeys when one will do.
- Match the quality of work to the time you have spare.
- Keep a few minutes for relaxation.
- Use latest time-saving gadgets whenever possible.
- Don’t take work home if you can avoid it.
“Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you”. Carl Sandburg.