You’re Losing Money at Work, Here’s How to Stop

The clock in your office is costing you money. It’s leaking. You may not realize it, but each tick of the second hand, each slide of the minute hand may be adding up to as much as five valuable hours going down the drain each week, or more.

The problem is, most hard-working individuals don’t watch their time carefully enough, if at all. And this adds-up to valuable work hours for which you don’t get credit.

The great news is, we can put an end to this waste of time and put more money on your bottom line.

Watch your time like it’s money

Track your time carefully from the minute you punch-in to the minute you shut down for the day. It will keep the small-but-valuable conversations, online research, phone calls, and brainstorm sessions from falling through the cracks.

Whether you’re a consultant, a wage earner, or a salaried employee you can benefit from these three easy steps:

  1. Write down a one word topic, such as “meeting”
  2. Write down the subject area(s) covered in bullet points
  3. List the activity time, sticking to ten-minute increments

Here’s an example:

With very little effort, you can make this part of your daily workflow. This diary and work record can include your notes or serve as a stand alone journal. Day-Timer’s Original 2-Page-Per-Day pages offer a great resource for time tracking.

Lawyers are very successful at tracking their time this way. In fact, back in 1952 Day-Timer recognized that legal professionals needed a chart to track their billable hours. The legendary “Lawyer’s Day” planner was born.

Showcase your productivity

Time tracking is also a valuable aid for evaluating and improving your productivity by comparing your weekly projects against the total hours spent on each activity. You will likely find some areas where too much or too little time is spent. Also, the next time you have a work review, you can impress your boss with a chart of your effectiveness.

Fight off procrastination

Here’s an additional tip: Time tracking is a productivity buster. When you write down your time, you are less interested in procrastinating. After all, no one wants to face the hour they spent watching mindless videos at work.

Start today

This is the planning secret that separates those who truly value their time and those who just think they do. Start today, get out your day planner and begin recording your activities. You’ll be suprised how much more work you’re actually accomplishing each day and you’ll enjoy better compensation for the work you’ve completed.

[photo by CarbonNYC]
Jeff Doubek Day-Timer Spokesperson Jeff Doubek can be reached at