BAC Education once again organised an insightful talk on 15th October 2021 under its weekly Work Different webinar entitled ‘Manage Your Role, Not Your Time’. Featuring speaker Dr. Selvamalar Ayadurai, the key takeaway from this talk was “If you don’t manage time, it will manage you.”
Dr. Malar explained about Stephen Covey’s’ 4 quadrants of time management, simplified in the image below.
According to Covey, “Putting first things first simply means organising and executing around your most important priorities. It is living and being driven by the principles you value most, not by the forces and agendas surrounding you.”
The Covey time management grid is an effective method of organising your priorities. It differentiates between activities that are important and those that are urgent. Important activities have an outcome that leads to the achievement of your goals, whether these are professional or personal.
Dr. Malar then spelt out the 5 categories in Role Management, detailing roles under “I, Family, Career, Social and Spiritual.”
‘I’ focuses on how we take care of ourselves before the rest is taken care of. ‘I’ will need to take time off to bask in simple pleasures in life, and it is important to always ‘sharpen the sword’, and grow intellectually. Values govern the way we are, how we act and how we behave, and when ‘I’ is neglected, mental wellbeing takes a toll.
When it comes to ‘Family’, we look at the active roles we play, and the tasks carried out under each role. For example, in your family, you may play the role of Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Aunt, Daughter-in-law – and you must find the time to invest emotionally in each role. Very often, a crack can lead to rifts, which then leads to breakups. Invest in your ‘Family’, and be sure to allocate time for each active role you play. Realise and acknowledge who you should spend time with, and never take time for granted.
Managing roles within your designation is managing your ‘Career’. To be able to perform and manage priorities at the workplace, it is advisable to have a weekly plan of roles and goals. If you are in a managerial role, you must plan, prioritise, have a buffer, and most importantly delegate. A time management sheet works best to justify why and how a task can be completed in a specific time.
The ‘Social’ aspect of role management acknowledges the fact that we have friends, how friends sometimes turn into family, and the need to stay connected and invest in our friendships.
‘Spirituality’ not only refers to when one is pious, but it is translated into our acts. It does not only mean praying and visiting places of worship, but about doing God’s work – social work, as we are all His instruments to communities and people in need. Thus, completing how we can add value and bring meaning to the lives of others.
This truly was a revelation for some, with Dr. Malar ending her session by emphasizing the need to live life with meaning and a purpose. If we manage our roles wisely, we will be able to manage time better.