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Time Management Tips and Skills - Professional Approaches for Drop-in Visits

Having the Time Management skills and tools to handle the age-old problem of the drop-in visitor who wastes your time is essential. In today's fast-pace work-world, effective communications are essential. Many of your drop-in visitors are important to your successfully performing your job; yet, far too many drop-ins can be a real time burden. Then too, how do you handle those occasions when it is necessary for you to initiate a face-to-face conversation with someone? 

Regardless of how irritating a drop-in visitor may become, there is never a reason to be abusive to him/her. There are too many professional ways to handle your visitors, ways that do not mis-treat the visitor, and do not demean you. The same need for professionalism and courtesy apply if you are the visitor.Here are five tips to help you get control of the drop-in visitors that could waste your time and help you avoid wasting the time of others:1.  When your visitor says, "Hi, __; How are you?" Don't use the traditional response, "I'm fine; how are you?" Your question may un-cage numerous frustrations, aches, pains, funny stories, gossip, etc.; and then, just try to re-cage it. When you don't have time to chit-chat, answer the visitor's "How are you?" with "I am fine; how can I help you?" Never ask a question for which you do not have the time to hear the answer.2.  Stand up when a visitor drops-in. You are asserting control of your turf; your visitor is less likely to sit down without an invitation to do so; standing conversations tend to be shorter than sitting conversations; you can casually move toward the door to signal the visit is ending.3.  Set routine appointments for routine business. If you and those you work with daily frequently interrupt each other, set times to meet each day so each of you can hold important, but non-urgent, items for the scheduled visits.  Unexpected interruptions will decrease immediately. 4.  Avoid becoming an unexpected drop-in visitor.  When a face-to-face visit is necessary, and you aren't dealing with an emergency or crisis, set an appointment or call to confirm the other person is available; create an agenda for the visit, and stick to it; avoid initiating small talk, unless you and the other person have time to add a friendly chat to your visit.5. Never forget this ... If you do not control your time, other people will control it for you. They may not intend to be abusive, but if focusing on their interests and needs, instead of yours, they may well be just that, without having any malice of intent.There is nothing in the five suggestions, above, that is un-professional or un-ethical.  It's all common sense; and there is nothing wrong with making common sense common practice.  It is not a sin to have poor Time Management skills and habits,but it is to keep them.To learn more about your Time Management skills and habits, to get 360 degree feedback from co-workers and learn hundreds of Time Management skills, tips and tools for greater personal developmentScience Articles, go to:www.manage-time-better.com

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


For nearly 30 years, Dr. Larry Baker has been an internationally recognized consultant, coach, speaker, author and publisher. His articles, books, booklets, tape albums, movie scripts and personal assessment surveys cover many Time Management topics, including strategic, operational, performance planning and organizational design and structure.Dr. Larry Baker  148 Helmswood Circle  Marietta, GA 30064Office: 770-218-8122 Cell: 678-232-4011 E-mail: larry@DrLarryBaker.com



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