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Best Time Management Activities, Exercises & Games for Employees
Corporate Training

Best Time Management Activities, Exercises & Games for Employees

8 mins read

by Pete Ford

Updated On Jun 12, 2024

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“Time is the new money.” - Richard Branson.

This insightful observation by Richard Branson underscores a pivotal truth in today’s business environment: the careful management of time can yield dividends as significant as financial investment. In the rapidly evolving corporate landscape, mastering time management is crucial not only for individual efficiency but also for achieving broader organizational goals. 

So, how to teach time management skills for your employees? Activities for time management skills are essential tools in this endeavor. They equip teams with the techniques to make informed decisions, prioritize effectively, and align daily efforts with strategic objectives. This blog delves into various activities to teach time management for employees that can enhance their capabilities and transform them into a more productive, efficient, and competitive unit ready to meet the challenges of today’s business environment.

The Strategic Value of Time Management Activities for Employees:

Engaging in time management training games and activities enhances organizational efficiency and effectiveness. These time management activities for adults at the workplace enhance problem-solving skills and promote cognitive development by challenging employees with new tasks. In addition, they play a crucial role in alleviating stress, which supports the long-term success and well-being of employees. Furthermore, these time management exercises for adults build essential teamwork skills by promoting better working relationships and boosting overall productivity at the workplace.

A study by timewatch highlights that 82% of people believe better time management would significantly increase their productivity at work, and 76% are willing to invest between 15 to 30 minutes daily to enhance their time management skills. 

This willingness to improve time management skills underscores its importance in the workplace. The fun activities for time management can bring substantial strategic values to an organization. Below are some of the key values:

1. Improved Time Awareness and Focus: Accurately understanding time perception helps employees plan tasks better, enhancing scheduling and meeting deadlines. This reduces overruns and ensures efficient time use. Additionally, improved focus and concentration enhance task performance by minimizing errors and boosting efficiency. Employees can complete tasks more quickly and accurately, leading to higher productivity and consistently meeting critical deadlines.

2. Self-Reflection and Improvement: Reflecting on daily activities helps employees identify and eliminate time-wasting habits, leading to more effective use of their time. Regular self-assessment encourages continuous improvement and helps employees adopt more productive behaviors.

3. Managing Distractions: Identifying and managing common distractions enhances focus and productivity, allowing employees to maintain a higher level of performance. Effective distraction management reduces errors and increases the quality of work output.

4. Cognitive Function Enhancement: Activities to improve time management enhances cognitive functions such as attention, working memory, and problem-solving skills, which are crucial for complex tasks. Enhanced cognitive abilities lead to better task execution and overall job performance.

Having explored the strategic value of time management activities, it's evident that structured training can profoundly impact productivity, stress management, and overall workplace efficiency. Now, let's delve into specific training activities for time management in the workplace. These activities are designed to equip employees with practical skills and techniques that can be immediately applied to their daily routines, fostering a culture of efficiency and continuous improvement.

Effective Time Management Training Activities and Games for the Workplace:

Employees struggling with time management has been an ever-known problem. Managing multiple tasks and dealing with life struggles can be excruciating. If you’re looking for training activities for enhancing your employees’ time management skills, it's probably only because the efforts in routine lectures, maintaining rigid schedules and to-do lists, providing reading materials on self-help time management or even conducting generic workshops have yielded no significant results.

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Below, we have outlined various time management training activities for employees and divided them into 6 distinct categories. Each of the categories is designed to address specific aspects of time management. These top rated time management games will help you drive significant improvements in workplace efficiency and employee satisfaction:

  1. Time Management Ice-Breaker Activities/Games
  2. Life Skills Activities for Time Management
  3. Team Collaboration Activities for Time Management
  4. Time Management Activities to Put Things into Perspective
  5. Time Management Activities for Planning and Prioritizing
  6. Time Management Activities for Senior Employees

1. Time Management Ice-Breaker Activities/Games:

Ice-breaker activities are crucial at the beginning of any training session to help participants feel comfortable and engaged. These time management team building activities not only set a positive tone for the session but also foster quick rapport among team members.

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By starting with some of these fun time management activities and exercises, participants can ease into the training, making them more receptive to learning new time management skills.

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
1. How Long is a Minute 10 minutes Participants close their eyes and signal when they think a minute is up. Enhances time perception and awareness.
2. Find Something in Common 15 minutes Participants find shared interests within a set time limit. Builds rapport and emphasizes the importance of quick connections.
3. The Name Game 10 minutes Participants introduce themselves with a descriptive adjective Aids in remembering names and fun personal facts.
4. Connection Cards 15 minutes Discuss topics on cards with a partner or group. Encourages sharing experiences and fosters empathy.

Steps to Conduct “How Long is a Minute” Time Management Activity:

Step 1: Explain to participants that this time management activity/game will help them understand their perception of time.

Step 2: Tell participants to close their eyes and raise their hands when they believe one minute has passed.

Step 3: Start a stopwatch without letting participants see it.

Step 4: Observe when participants raise their hands.

Step 5: Announce when one minute is actually up.

Step 6: Discuss the variations in time perception among the participants as a part of this time management clock activity.

Steps to Conduct “Find Something in Common” Activity:

Step 1: Explain that this time management activity/game will help participants find common ground quickly.

Step 2: Instruct participants to pair up and find something they have in common within 3 minutes.

Step 3: Set a timer of 3 minutes for this group activity on time management.

Step 4: After 3 minutes, have participants switch partners and repeat the process.

Step 5: Allow multiple rounds to ensure participants interact with several people.

Step 6: Gather the group and discuss the findings.

Steps to Conduct “The Name Game” Activity:

Step 1: Describe the activity's goal to create a fun introduction.

Step 2: Ask participants to think of an adjective that describes them, starting with the same letter as their name.

Step 3: Go around the room and have each person share their name and adjective.

Step 4: Challenge the group to recall each other’s names and adjectives.

Step 5: Discuss the creativity shown and any new things learned about colleagues.

Step 6: Encourage the team to use these names and adjectives in future conversations to build companionship.

Steps to Conduct “Connection Cards” Activity:

Step 1: Introduce this one of the team building activities (time management) as a way to deepen team connections.

Step 2: For this time management activity, arrange the cards with different personal and professional topics and hand it out to the participants.

Step 3: Allow participants to discuss each card topic with a partner or in small groups.

Step 4: Rotate partners or groups to maximize interactions.

Step 5: Bring everyone together to share interesting discoveries or common themes.

Step 6: Life Skills Time Management Activities

2. Life Skills Time Management Activities:

Life skills activities are designed to provide deeper insights into the importance of prioritization and effective time management through relatable, everyday examples. These time management exercises emphasize the practical application of time management principles, helping participants understand the broader impact of managing their time wisely in both personal and professional contexts. Let’s check out some of the popular life skills activities for time management:

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
5. Mayonnaise Jar 20 minutes Demonstrate priorities using a jar, rocks, pebbles, and sand. Highlights the importance of prioritizing tasks.
6. What Did You Do Yesterday 15 minutes Participants list and categorize previous day’s tasks. Encourages reflection and identification of time wasters.

Steps to Conduct “Mayonnaise Jar” Activity for Time Management:

The Jar of Life - Put Important Things

Life Skills Activities for Time Management

Step 1: Explain the metaphor behind the Mayonnaise Jar and its significance in prioritizing tasks.

Step 2: Display the empty jar, rocks, pebbles, and sand.

Step 3: Describe how the jar represents a day and the materials represent tasks of varying importance.

Step 4: Fill the jar first with rocks, then pebbles, then sand to show how prioritizing important tasks leaves room for smaller ones.

Step 5: During this time management jar activity, it is optional to allow participants to try filling their own jars.

Step 6: Discuss the metaphor learned during the mayo jar activity-time management and its application in daily work.

Steps to Conduct “What Did You Do Yesterday” Activity:

Step 1: Explain that this activity will help identify how time was spent the previous day.

Step 2: Give each participant a sheet of paper and a pen.

Step 3: Instruct participants to list everything they did the previous day and categorize the tasks as productive or unproductive.

Step 4: Allow 10 minutes for participants to complete their “What I did yesterday” time management activity.

Step 5: Discuss the findings and share insights.

Step 6: Summarize common time wasters and strategies to minimize them.

3. Team Collaboration Activities for Time Management:

Team collaboration activities are essential for fostering effective communication and cooperation among team members. These time management group activities training highlight the importance of delegating tasks and working together efficiently to achieve common goals.

Team Collaboration Activities for Time Management
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By improving teamwork skills, participants can enhance productivity and create a more cohesive work environment.

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
7. The Great Egg Drop 45 minutes Teams must build a structure to protect an egg from breaking when dropped from a height. Fosters collaboration, innovation, and time management skills.
8. Paper Boat Factory 25 minutes Teams create as many paper boats as possible within a set time. Emphasizes efficiency and teamwork in task completion.

Steps to Conduct “The Great Egg Drop” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the objective and rules of the activity.

Step 2: Provide each group with an egg and various building materials.

Step 3: Give teams 30 minutes to design and build a structure to protect their egg.

Step 4: Drop each structure from a predetermined height to test their designs.

Step 5: Observe the planning, collaboration, and time management strategies used by each team.

Step 6: Discuss what worked, what didn’t, and how time management impacted their designs.

Steps to Conduct “Paper Boat Factory” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the purpose of the activity to promote teamwork and efficiency.

Step 2: Provide each group with paper, scissors, and tape.

Step 3: Instruct teams to create as many paper boats as possible within 15 minutes.

Step 4: Allow 15 minutes for the groups to complete the task.

Step 5: Observe the strategies used by different teams.

Step 6: Count the number of boats and discuss the strategies used.

4. Time Management Activities for Employees to Put Things into Perspective:

Time management activities that put things into perspective help participants understand the value of time and the importance of managing it wisely. These exercises encourage employees to reflect on how they spend their time and identify areas for improvement.

Time Management Activities for Employees to Put Things into Perspective
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By gaining a better perspective on time management, participants can make more informed decisions and prioritize tasks more effectively.

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
9. How Would You Spend $86,400? 20 minutes Participants decide how to spend $86,400 in 24 hours. Illustrates the value of time and resource allocation.
10. Time Squared 30 minutes Participants track activities in 15-minute intervals to analyze time usage. Provides insights into effective time management.
11. Dealing With Distractions 15 minutes Identify and discuss common distractions and ways to minimize them. Enhances focus and productivity by managing distractions.

Steps to Conduct “How Would You Spend $86,400?” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the metaphor behind $86,400 representing the seconds in a day.

Step 2: Provide participants with play money representing $86,400.

Step 3: Instruct participants to allocate this money to various activities.

Step 4: Allow 15 minutes for participants to allocate their funds.

Step 5: Observe the choices participants make during this $86400 time management activity.

Step 6: Discuss the allocations and their implications.

Steps to Conduct “Time Squared” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the purpose of tracking time to understand time management.

Step 2: Provide each participant with a time-tracking sheet.

Step 3: Instruct participants to track their activities in 15-minute intervals for a day.

Step 4: Have participants fill out their sheets throughout the day.

Step 5: Gather the completed time-tracking sheets once the time square time management activity is completed.

Step 6: Discuss patterns and identify areas for improvement.

Steps to Conduct “Dealing With Distractions” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the purpose of identifying and managing distractions.

Step 2: Instruct participants to list common distractions.

Step 3: Allow 10 minutes for participants to create their lists.

Step 4: Discuss the most common distractions and effective strategies for managing them.

Step 5: Encourage participants to share their strategies.

Step 6: Summarize key strategies and encourage participants to apply them.

5. Time Management Activities for Planning and Prioritizing:

Planning and prioritizing activities for time management are crucial for helping participants learn how to organize their tasks and manage their time efficiently. These time management exercises for managers and employees teach the importance of setting priorities and planning ahead to ensure that the most important tasks are completed first.

Time Management Activities for Planning and Prioritizing
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By mastering these skills through time management prioritizing activities, managers and employees can improve their productivity and achieve their goals more effectively.

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
12. Picking Up Blocks 20 minutes Participants prioritize and complete tasks using blocks representing different activities. Highlights the importance of task prioritization.
13. Circadian Rhythm 25 minutes Participants plan tasks according to their peak productivity times based on circadian rhythms. Optimizes task planning based on natural energy cycles.

Steps to Conduct “Picking Up Blocks” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the importance of prioritizing tasks.

Step 2: Provide each group with blocks and task cards.

Step 3: Instruct participants to prioritize and complete tasks using the blocks.

Step 4: Allow 15 minutes for participants to complete their tasks.

Step 5: Observe how tasks are prioritized and completed.

Step 6: Discuss the prioritization process and its impact on task completion.

Steps to Conduct “Circadian Rhythm” Time Management Activity:

Step 1: Explain the concept of circadian rhythms and their impact on productivity.

Step 2: Provide each participant with a task planning sheet as part of the circadian rhythm time management activity.

Step 3: Instruct participants to plan their tasks according to their peak productivity times based on circadian rhythms.

Step 4: Allow 20 minutes for participants to complete their plans.

Step 5: Review the task plans created by participants during the circadian rhythm time management activity.

Step 6: Discuss how energy cycles affect productivity and how to plan tasks accordingly.

6. Time Management Activities for Senior Employees:

Interactive time management activities that are tailored for seniors focus on maintaining mental sharpness and fostering engagement through challenging tasks. These activities are designed to improve concentration, fine motor skills, and overall cognitive function.

Time Management Activities for Senior Employees
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By participating in these exercises, senior employees can stay mentally active and contribute effectively to their teams.

Sl. No. Activity Duration Rules Key Takeaways
14. Jigsaw Puzzles 30 minutes Teams complete a jigsaw puzzle within a set time frame. Enhances problem-solving and teamwork skills.
15. Sort the Cards 20 minutes Participants sort a deck of cards by suit and number as quickly as possible. Improves concentration and fine motor skills.
16. Pomodoro 25 minutes Work in 25-minute intervals with 5-minute breaks, using a timer to manage sessions. Enhances focus and productivity through time intervals.
17. Kanban 30 minutes Use a Kanban board to visually manage tasks and workflow. Improves task visualization and workflow management.

Steps to Conduct “Jigsaw Puzzles” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the benefits of problem-solving and teamwork through puzzles.

Step 2: Provide each group with a jigsaw puzzle.

Step 3: Instruct participants to complete the puzzle within a set time frame.

Step 4: Allow 30 minutes for participants to work on the puzzle.

Step 5: Observe how teams are collaborating and solving the puzzle.

Step 6: Discuss the strategies used during the time management puzzle activity and the importance of teamwork.

Steps to Conduct “Sort the Cards” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the purpose of improving concentration and motor skills.

Step 2: Provide each participant with a deck of cards.

Step 3: Instruct participants to sort the cards by suit and number as quickly as possible.

Step 4: Allow 10 minutes for participants to sort their cards.

Step 5: Observe the sorting process and speed.

Step 6: Discuss the challenges faced and the benefits of improved concentration.

Steps to Conduct “Pomodoro” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the Pomodoro technique and its benefits.

Step 2: Ensure each participant has access to a timer.

Step 3: Instruct participants to work for 25 minutes, followed by a 5-minute break, repeating the cycle four times with a longer break after the fourth session.

Step 4: Begin the first 25-minute work session.

Step 5: Observe participants during the work and break intervals.

Step 6: Discuss the effectiveness of the Pomodoro technique.

Steps to Conduct “Kanban” Activity:

Step 1: Explain the Kanban method and its benefits for workflow management.

Step 2: Provide each participant with sticky notes and access to a Kanban board.

Step 3: Instruct participants to write down tasks on sticky notes and place them in the "To Do" column, moving them to "In Progress" and "Done" as they work.

Step 4: Allow participants to organize their tasks on the Kanban board.

Step 5: Observe how tasks are managed and moved through the workflow.

Step 6: Discuss the benefits of visualizing tasks and managing workflows.

What Time Management Tool Helps you Prioritize Tasks and Activities?

Integrating time management in the workplace activities for improvement is a strategic move that can improve organizational efficiency. These activities must be systematically introduced and embedded into the daily routines to ensure long-term success. The following are some of the tools and techniques to integrate time management activities for workplace.

1. Structured Scheduling: Implement structured scheduling techniques such as time-blocking, where employees allocate specific hours for high-priority tasks, ensuring that critical tasks receive dedicated time without interruptions.

2. Task Prioritization: Apply prioritization strategies to daily workflows. Employees can use methods like the Eisenhower Matrix to distinguish between urgent and important tasks, ensuring high-priority work is completed first.

3. Collaborative Tools: Encourage the use of collaborative tools like Asana or Trello to enhance teamwork. These platforms allow for transparent task delegation and progress tracking, fostering better communication and efficiency.

4. Focused Work Intervals: Integrate techniques like the Pomodoro method into daily routines to enhance concentration and productivity. Employees work in focused intervals followed by short breaks, reducing mental fatigue and improving task completion rates.

5. Time Tracking and Analysis: Use tools like Toggl to track time spent on various tasks. Analyzing this data helps identify inefficiencies and areas for improvement, ensuring better time allocation.

6. Managing Distractions: Establish distraction-free zones and use apps like Freedom to block non-work-related websites. This strategy helps employees maintain focus during critical work periods.

Common Roadblocks to Implementing Time Management Practices

Challenge 1: Resistance to Change

Resistance to change is a significant challenge when integrating new time management practices. Employees often prefer familiar routines and may be skeptical about new methods, fearing they will disrupt their workflow. This resistance can stem from a lack of understanding of the benefits or previous negative experiences with change. Without buy-in from the team, even the best strategies can fail to take root, leading to inconsistent application and minimal impact.

Addressing the Challenge: 

1. Education and Communication: Clearly communicate the benefits of time management practices through workshops and success stories. Emphasize how these changes will improve both personal productivity and overall organizational efficiency.

2. Involvement and Ownership: Involve employees in the planning process to give them a sense of ownership. When employees feel they have a say in how changes are implemented, they are more likely to embrace them.

3. Incremental Changes: Introduce changes gradually rather than all at once. This allows employees to adjust to new practices slowly, reducing resistance.

Challenge 2: Inconsistent Application of Time Management Practices

Inconsistent application of time management practices can undermine their effectiveness. This inconsistency may arise from a lack of clear guidelines, insufficient training, or varying levels of commitment among employees. When time management strategies are not uniformly applied, it can lead to confusion, reduced productivity, and a lack of measurable improvements across the organization.

Addressing the Challenge: 

1. Standardized Policies: Develop and enforce a standardized time management policy that outlines specific practices and expectations. Ensure all employees are trained on these policies.

2. Regular Training and Refreshers: Conduct regular training sessions and refresher courses to reinforce time management techniques. This keeps the practices fresh in employees' minds and encourages consistent application.

3. Monitoring and Feedback: Use performance metrics to monitor the application of time management practices. Provide regular feedback and support to help employees stay on track.

Challenge 3: Balancing Schedule Flexibility with Structured Project Timelines

Balancing schedule flexibility with structured project timelines is crucial for effective time management. While project structures help in maintaining order and meeting deadlines, schedule flexibility is necessary to adapt to unexpected changes. Employees may struggle to find this balance, leading to either rigidity that stifles productivity or excessive flexibility that undermines discipline.

Addressing the Challenge: 

1. Flexible Frameworks: Establish a flexible yet structured framework that allows employees to adapt their schedules as needed while still prioritizing high-impact tasks. Encourage the use of flexible time-blocking techniques that can be adjusted as priorities shift.

2. Clear Guidelines: Provide clear guidelines on when to adhere strictly to schedules and when adjustments are acceptable. This helps employees understand the balance between flexibility and structure.

3. Supportive Leadership: Ensure that managers and leaders support flexible scheduling and are available to help employees navigate changes in their work priorities.

Challenge 4: Overcoming Procrastination

Procrastination is a common barrier to effective time management. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including fear of failure, lack of motivation, or feeling overwhelmed by tasks. Procrastination leads to missed deadlines, decreased productivity, and increased stress among employees.

Addressing the Challenge: 

1. Accountability Systems: Implement accountability systems where employees set and review goals with peers or supervisors. Regular check-ins and progress reviews help keep employees accountable.

2. Motivational Techniques: Use motivational techniques such as setting smaller, achievable milestones. Reward employees for reaching these milestones to keep them motivated and on track.

3. Proactive Planning: Encourage proactive planning and the use of daily to-do lists to help employees stay focused and avoid procrastination.

Challenge 5: Adhering to Time Management Practices

Adhering to time management practices can be challenging, especially over the long term. Initial enthusiasm may wane, leading to a decline in the consistent use of techniques. This disengagement can result from repetitive practices, lack of variety, or perceived lack of relevance.

Addressing the Challenge: 

1. Varied Practices: Keep time management practices varied and engaging by integrating different types of exercises. Regularly update training materials to keep them relevant and interesting.

2. Feedback and Adaptation: Solicit regular feedback from employees to understand what works and what doesn't. Adapt the activities based on this feedback to ensure they remain effective and engaging.

3. Recognition and Rewards: Recognize and reward employees who demonstrate strong time management skills. Public recognition and tangible rewards can motivate others to engage more fully with the activities.

Conclusion

Integrating time management activities into the workplace is more than a productivity enhancement—it's a strategic investment in your organization's future. Overcoming initial challenges and ensuring consistent implementation of time management training activities can deeply embed these practices into your company's culture. 

These best time management games and activities evolve from routine exercises to core components of your corporate ethos. Additionally, varied and engaging time management exercises and activities maintain employee motivation and foster a long-term commitment to enhancing their time management skills.

Organizations can refer to the time management activities examples mentioned in the blog to create their own customized activities. By embracing these activities to learn time management, your organization can achieve a harmonious balance between efficiency and employee satisfaction. This holistic approach not only enhances performance but also drives innovation and resilience, ensuring your company remains competitive and forward-thinking in an ever-evolving business landscape. 

Edstellar is a global corporate training platform that can enhance your employees’ time management skills through our meticulously designed courses. Our experienced trainers utilize proven methodologies and practical exercises to ensure that your teams can effectively manage their time, boosting both individual and organizational productivity. 

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