Questions tagged [time-management]

Questions around how to control where one allocates energy over the course of a work day. Where does one spend time and make the most of that time in the office.

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106
votes
12answers
60k views

How can I “kill” time at work when there is no work for me to do?

I am a chemical engineer, and I have been spending much of the last two months doing nothing (either surfing the web or chatting with other employees) since my project has been very slow. The company ...
34
votes
5answers
10k views

My manager always seems too busy to meet with me. How can I improve that?

He's a great guy, but it feels like he's always in meetings or going to conferences or on the phone on long calls. He has told me that he really enjoys those interactions. He and I work somewhat ...
10
votes
4answers
6k views

What to do after I finish all my tasks and my manager has no tasks to give me? [duplicate]

Sometimes, after I finish all my tasks, my boss has no tasks to give me. So I sit and feel bad I'm not doing anything. Additionally, I'm not sure if I can surf the Internet and mind my own business or ...
82
votes
13answers
23k views

How to respond to, “How long will this take?” when in a new job position

I started a new job two weeks ago using technologies that are new to me. I was upfront from the start about what I did and did not know so there's no surprises. I do a little of everything and so I ...
24
votes
6answers
7k views

Is it okay to work on personal projects in my spare time at work?

About two months ago, I started work as a full time server administrator for a small company. I have almost nothing to do. I generally work 1-2 hours a day. There have only been two days where I ...
13
votes
3answers
4k views

How do you tell a business user politely that the work she's requesting has to come through my boss?

I have a customer that has been going through me to request work. All requests need to go through my manager before we can address them. I have already sent her 3 mails stating this. The last 2 ...
48
votes
14answers
7k views

What to do when different project managers insisting that I must work on their requests immediately?

There are 5 project managers who keep coming to me and insisting that their requests are urgent and I find myself switching between 4 different projects, while I am supposed to work on only 1 project ...
-1
votes
1answer
1k views

Dealing with lack of work in new job efficiently and professionally [duplicate]

I joined this IT company 3 months ago for my first job as C developer. I graduated last summer as software engineer and to make things clear, this is not my first "Getting in touch" with professional ...
333
votes
20answers
79k views

What is a 'friendly' way to let managers know that having good developers is a privilege?

I work for a small company, where we recently had a change of managers. The new manager has no experience managing developers, and the old manager has moved into a development role to fill in gaps ...
38
votes
5answers
10k views

How to cope with an employee who stays late and does work on Saturdays?

I work in the IT industry. One of my employee works late and on weekends. I, on the other hand, arrive and leave on time. The project schedule is tight, and others are asking me to work extra hours, ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How to politely bring up that I need more work [duplicate]

I am working a salaried position at a small software firm. Currently I am on a team that is working on a large program that is broken down into small features, which our project lead will assign to ...
177
votes
9answers
14k views

How can I increase focus when doing something boring?

I'm a senior software dev at a contractor company. The issue I'm asking about goes as follows: When I program or debug or do something I like, I'm super-fast. I'm fast enough that I do tasks in 50% ...
7
votes
1answer
834 views

How to avoid recruiters

I'm sorry if this comes off as a first world problem but over the past few years I have been getting an increasing volume of emails from recruiters. These emails have started amounting to a few ...
30
votes
8answers
46k views

How do I politely ask about the “urgency” of a work request - i.e. what date should it be completed by?

I work in an IT Help Desk role, and I often get requests that have vague "due-dates". So maybe a Project Manager wants a large database pull, which will take at least a week of my time. But they don'...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How can one politely keep a coworker on topic? [duplicate]

I am a junior developer in a small team of about 20 people, I have been working at this job for about 1 year so far. Every now and then I have to ask a question to my senior coworkers. Those questions ...
4
votes
1answer
759 views

How can I manage up with a supervisor that doesn't respect time?

I'm currently freelancing on a project, and my supervisor has time management issues. He doesn't respect other people's time - or at least doesn't respect the time I reserved with him. Examples ...
-1
votes
3answers
2k views

A Tale Of Two Receptionists [closed]

One works early morning to afternoon (say 7 AM to 3 PM) and the other comes in 11 AM to 7 PM. So for several hours during the day, they overlap. The later time receptionist is also chronically late ...
335
votes
18answers
64k views

Coworker keeps threatening to tattle on me for “time theft”

One of my coworkers is especially nosy and keeps tabs on when I come to work and leave, and how long my lunch break is, how many times I go to the restroom and how long each break takes, and so on. ...
60
votes
8answers
23k views

How to handle being late

I hate being late and usually am early, though on occasion I still arrive late. This is embarrassing but today I had a large coffee before leaving for work, and I had to get off the bus to use the ...
177
votes
14answers
37k views

Is it unprofessional to have a quiet alarm for your own finishing time?

At my current job - a UK-based development company - I set a vibrate-only alarm on my phone that goes off for only a second at 5:30 pm (which is my official end time). I don't like to literally watch ...
32
votes
11answers
11k views

How to convince employees that IM and Facebook during work is unethical?

I believe that the employer pays employees their salaries to keep working for seven or eight hours daily, and he didn't agree, while signing the contract, that there is few hours set aside daily for ...
93
votes
10answers
22k views

My manager said I spend too much time on Stack Exchange. How can I prove its value?

I was recently speaking with my manager, who stated that while my work is satisfactory, they've been noticing I'm spending a lot of time of Stack Exchange. I find Stack Exchange to be very informative ...
107
votes
11answers
32k views

My boss wants me to attend a meeting every day before work hours

My manager at a software company I've worked at for a few years has asked me to join a status update (a standup if you are familiar with agile) meeting daily, before my normal work hours. My boss ...
27
votes
6answers
7k views

How to deal with a boss that continues to do day-to-day work?

My boss (and, actually, his boss too, which is the company general director) are generally quite good. But it happens (seldom, but frequently enough) that they start to fiddle with the details: day to ...
12
votes
4answers
4k views

How do you deal with co-workers who respond to your emails without reading the whole thing, or don't read them at all?

I'm a web developer (who writes code -- not css/designer). I work in an office, but many managers work remotely, hence the heavy reliance on email/IM. I am starting to notice a trend where people ...
25
votes
5answers
11k views

How to politely decline unproductive jobs assigned by my manager?

I'm working on contract basis with an IT giant. Since I have good experience on the project which I'm working now my manager asks me to train the new recruits whenever they join. Giving knowledge ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

How to Manage Your Employees' Absences and Late Arrivals?

I am working in a small (4 people) team (agency industry) and we are on the right track regarding the productivity. The company is really flat and liberal but doesn't allow remote work but on the ...
2
votes
4answers
19k views

How to respond to your boss when he ask what took so long to finish a project?

I was assigned multiple projects at work and one of the projects my boss is asking what took so long to complete. The project he is referring to was reassigned to me with not enough information to ...
6
votes
7answers
2k views

Am I right to consider workload when new good ideas are suggested by my team?

Sometimes people in my team (including a Mr. Know-It-All, as he is often leading the revolutionary charge) come up with some really good ideas or valid criticism. If they require very little time ...
4
votes
2answers
652 views

Dealing with long periods with no work

Background Information I work as a junior software developer for a large company and am a part of a small team of developers. A lot of our work has been outsourced to an offshore team. Recently some ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

How can I deal with someone who is always nitpicking?

One of the developers of my team is causing a bit of "stress" inside the team. We are organized in an Agile team (we use Scrum), and we meet regularly, both for the various "ceremonies" (estimating ...
5
votes
2answers
553 views

Small general construction business that needs help getting crew to provide DETAILED info on exactly what tasks they did and how long it took

Cliff note version, we need to be able to provided detailed info about what tasks each crew member did on a daily basis. Easy example, we cannot justify billing a customer x amount when currently ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How to stay productive during work system downtime? [duplicate]

When systems are down and I cannot do my work so I have a free hour or possibly more, what is an acceptable means of passing time in the office for an engineer? In the present situation all my work ...
3
votes
3answers
536 views

How can I tell my boss I have not been successful in completing an assignment?

I received an assignment almost 2 weeks ago that I have not been able to complete, due to lack of support, both from inside and outside my company, despite reaching out for assistance both in and ...
1
vote
2answers
232 views

E-mail management question [closed]

There is an internal support type department in our company that gets bombarded with emails daily from staff. The support group is 8 people, each part of the same email workgroup on MS Office. ...
-2
votes
4answers
470 views

Research and proof of concept work for an unapproved project [closed]

I've been rolling an idea around in the back of my head for a coding project at a company I was recently hired on to that would add significant value to my company's primary software package. My ...