The Unseen Connection: Interpersonal Communication and Time Management

The Unseen Connection: Interpersonal Communication and Time Management

Dan Shalem

In today’s fast-paced world, companies are becoming increasingly aware that time management is a critical skill for professional success.

Despite the abundance of apps and tools at our disposal, it is often a constant struggle to stay on top of the never-ending tasks on our to-do lists. So, how do some people accomplish so much while many of us struggle to keep up?

When we present our company in the “Accomplish More” time-management workshop, some of the participants find themselves puzzled. We are, after all, a company that specializes in communication skills. So, they ask, “What’s the connection between communication skills and time management?” At first glance, the connection might seem flimsy. After all, what does the art of interpersonal communication have to do with the science of organizing our hours, minutes, and seconds? The answer, as many participants have discovered, is quite a lot.

Interpersonal communication is not just about talking and listening. It’s about setting boundaries, setting expectations with those around us, reflecting our priorities to our managers, and learning how to say no when we need to. These are all skills that are crucial for effective time management.

In our workshop, we explore the causes and consequences of ineffective time management and uncover the secrets of some of history’s most productive performers. Through a combination of mindset training, exercises, and discussions, attendees leave with a new perspective on time management and the practical tools and strategies needed to achieve their goals.

But where does interpersonal communication come into play? Let’s consider the skill of setting boundaries. This is a critical aspect of both interpersonal communication and time management. When we can effectively communicate our limits to others, we prevent our time from being encroached upon by tasks and responsibilities that do not align with our priorities.

Similarly, setting expectations with our managers is another skill that straddles both domains. We may have planned our working week to perfection, only to find that these plans are placed in jeopardy by new urgent tasks which land on our desk, or “fires” that need to be fought. By effectively communicating our current workload and the potential impact of adding new and urgent tasks, we can ensure that the most important tasks are prioritized and any unrealistic expectations are quashed.

Finally, the ability to say no is perhaps one of the most important skills in both interpersonal communication and time management. Saying no is not just about refusing a request; it’s about protecting our time and ensuring that we can focus on the tasks that are most important to us.

So, the next time you find yourself wondering about the connection between interpersonal communication and time management, remember this: both are about setting boundaries, communicating effectively, and protecting our most valuable resource – our time.

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