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Time Management

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TIME MANAGEMENT: How to survive the rat race especially in a city like Lagos

  • Have you ever heard anyone say – I wish I had less time?
  • People use time, waste it and spend it.
  • Time is non-renewable, once-gone, it’s forever lost.

The following sayings are legendary:

  • You cannot cry over spilled milk.
  • Yesterday is a cancelled check, tomorrow a promissory note; only today is ready cash. What’s done is done. So what are doing with today?
  • How you spend time is a function of the things you consider important to you.
  • If time is a compass it is directed at your vision, mission, goals, purposes, doing right things, and scheduling priorities.
  • If it is a clock, it is about activities, doing things right, and prioritizing schedules.
  • So, what can be done with time?

Compass versus Clock

Clock                                   Compass

Commitments                      Purpose

Appointments                       Vision

Activities                                Mission

Speed                                    Values/Principles

To Do’s                                  Direction

Doing things right                Doing right things

Management                        Leadership

Prioritizing schedule            Scheduling priorities

Painful Realities About Time

  • Time is passing us by and once gone can never be replaced
  • The older one gets, the quicker time seems to be passing
  • There are only 24 hours in each day
  • Time cannot be MANAGED, but you can manage yourself
  • Greater efficiency will not necessarily lead to better utilisation of time
  • How you spend your time determines who you are and who you will become

What should we do with time?

  • Time to Think – visioning/mission
  • Time to Plan – goals
  • Time to Act – growth
  • Procrastination – minimize lose time

“Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least” (Johann Wolfang Van Goethe)

Time Quadrants – Steven Covey

The most efficient time managers are quadrant II (2) people. Which quadrant are you?

There must a conscious effort to improve on your management of time. To achieve your vision or mission you must be committed to making sacrifices. Like the saying goes, “there is no gain without pain”.

As a young officer in Chartered Bank Plc, the Deputy Managing Director, now Chairman of Heritage Bank (Dr. AkinsolaAkinfemiwa, OON), shared an experience regarding a decision he made as a Deputy Manager by relocating to Victoria Island. This improved his productivity and expedited his promotions. I never forgot that experience and the sacrifices that went with it. So as a manager, I also relocated to Ikoyi and my lovely wife and myself had similar experiences with our career. What were the gains? Had enough sleep and well rested, was more mentally alert, healthier (no traffic wear and tear on the body), was more productive, and the promotions also came.

What we thought we lost in rent was compensated in promotions and other savings. We were able to improve our academic status, did M.B.A. programs and I later went further for a D.B.A. degree.

So what are your goals, are you aligning your time to your goals, are you willing to make the sacrifices that will go with it?

Benefits of Time Management

  • You become efficient and effective
  • You become successful
  • You are healthy
  • You remain focused
  • You are able to development yourself and others
  • You witness enhanced results in your performance
  • Your self-esteem improves
  • You live a balanced life
  • You have inner peace


Make the right choices, manage yourself and time will be under your control.

  • Leadership is by the compass, management is by the clock
  • Spend time on things that are important to you.


  • Examine your life and the way you spend your time?
  • Do you know what is important to you?
  • Do you spend more time doing what is urgent or what is important?

Forum Discussion:

You live in Ikorodu and work in Victoria Island. You currently live in an apartment where you pay N500,000.00 a year. Your commuting time averages five hours a day. You were recently paid N5.0 million and had to make a choice between moving to Gbagada and paying N1.5 million as rent per annum or moving to Lekki and paying N3.5 million as rent per annum. The opportunity cost is a savings of N3.5 million but commuting time of three to four hours as against a commuting time of 30 minutes to one hour and savings of N1.5 million. What choice will you make?

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