Time Management Tips I’ve Implemented This Year

Britt Bravo is hosting the Nonprofit Blog Carnival this month and asked for some of our favorite time saving tips. Here are some of the things I’ve used this year to really help me manage my own time better. I can’t wait to hear what everyone else comes up with for the Carnival, because I’m sure there’s more I could be doing.


I like to piddle around, especially with technology. But it can suck up a bunch of time. So, I’ve gotten better about delegating tasks to my virtual assistant. We’ve had to set aside some good chunks of time to train her to do things the way I want them done, but that’s let me let go of them, freeing up more of my time.

What can you hand off to someone else?

Bringing in Guest Experts

You may have noticed more guest posts on this blog, and that’s by design. Our goal is to have one guest post per week, coupled with a Mixed Links roundup a few times a month, both of which mean I have more time to focus on the blog posts I write. We are also bringing in more guest speakers for the webinar series.

Bringing in guest experts is a win-win situation, because it saves me time while allowing our guest experts to connect with you. How can you better use the experts in your network?

Thinking Six Months Ahead

Planning our webinar programming six months ahead, instead of three, has saved me a bunch of time, because I’m not scrabbling as much. We still publish the schedule only three months at a time in case we do want to make adjustments, but behind the scenes, we have the programming sketched out through December.

I still think only a couple of weeks at time for our editorial calendars for this blog and my e-newsletter, but having a longer timeframe in mind for our core activities has really helped us focus.

Would thinking further ahead save some of that scrabbling time you waste?

Creating a Marketing Bank

Seems like not a day goes by that I’m not adding a file or using a file in our marketing bank. It’s another great time-saver to have all of that stuff in one place. What’s in yours?

Time Blocking

I use multiple Google calendars layered on top of each other to manage my time. One of them is dedicated to time blocking, where I schedule time for specific projects and tasks. Because these are all self-imposed items on the schedule that can be changed if needed, I like to keep them on a different calendar than my appointments calendar, which is much more rigid about what I have to do and when. That way I can turn off and turn on the calendars to see only what I want to see at any given time.

How do you manage your calendars?

Using Technology Tools

I’m still a big believer in using lists to deal with information overload and I’m still relying heavily on technology tools to keep me organized, which saves a tremendous amount of time.

Share your tips in the comments!

P.S. I’m hosting the Nonprofit Blog Carnival in August and the theme will be “Kooky, Quirky, and Off-Beat Marketing and Fundraising.” I’ll be asking you to identify the best creative ideas you’ve seen out there. More details next week . . .

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  • Great topic!  I enjoyed reading your post, my favorite time saving tip and one that I use often is time blocking, or group “like activities.” The key to making this work is to free yourself of distractions and interruptions.

    Saying NO! If we learn to strengthen our NO muscle we can avoid taking on too much and the feeling of overwhelm.  The key to this is being prepared and knowing how to respond so we don’t take on unnecessary projects out of guilt.

    Prioritize your interruptions. This one I use the most as we tend to get interrupted all day long. This works by asking ourselves the “silent question” immediately when the interruption occurs. If it’s red do in now, otherwise reschedule an proceed with what you were doing.  This includes answering the phone, email, and text on demand. Thanks for letting me comment.

    Mark Woods, author of Attack Your Day!

  • judy anderson

    Hey, thanks for sharing. You are clearly top of the line in time management–as you are everywhere 🙂

    Do you have suggestions for the following technology?
    I’m looking for something that would allow about 20-30 people sign up (select) 3-5 organizations that they want to reach out to. I want it to be something were people can see what has already been selected, and make their choices accordingly. And, I’d like to be able to print it out or create a PDF to share with all involved. There’s got to be something out there, don’t you think?

  • This is astonishing. I’ve been looking for this article in the net and here it is! Thanks for posting.

  • Delegating, although difficult, is in my opinion the most useful.

  • As a freelance writer, I have a passion for time being
    well managed.  The thing that’s missing
    in so many of our lives is that TIME is our #1 commodity (not money).  If we understand that, then we’re able to
    come up with some creative ways to maximize it, such as do what we love — and
    OUTSOURCE the rest. 


    For anyone interested, having an easy and effective time
    tracker can help set priorities and make life much more manageable. It increases productivity and billable hours,
    and it reduces wasted “lost” time. 
    A 21-day trial of Office Time is available at http://OfficeTime.net


    Warmly, Mary Agnes Antonopoulos
    Freelance Writer and Blogger

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