Time management can be a challenge, even for the most devoted worker. This is true whether you are working in an office or working remotely from home.  

So, we have put together a list of our favourite time management games, which can be played as a team or alone, to help you both understand the importance of time management, and work out how to improve your process. While also having a little bit of fun… 

Best time management games

  1. How long is a minute?

This is a pretty self-explanatory game which really helps to improve your understanding of the passage of time. It can be played alone, or in a team. If alone, just set a stopwatch, and close your eyes. When you believe that 60 seconds has passed, open your eyes again and find out how close you were. If you opened your eyes significantly earlier or later than the 60 second mark, this could indicate issues with your understanding of time. 

  1. The Race of Spades

A team exercise that requires two decks of cards. The first deck is stacked in order, from aces to kings. The second deck is shuffled well, with some cards facing up, and some facing down. Pick two volunteers and give each of them a deck of cards, then instruct them to find the ace of spades – the person who finds it first, wins. This game should demonstrate the value of working in an organised manner, versus the challenge of working without order.

  1. Free Time

This game helps you to identify unused, or under-optimised periods of time within your day. Start by dividing a piece of paper into 24 blocks. Mark out eight blocks for sleeping, eight blocks for working, and two to three hours for eating. Then add in any other necessary or routine tasks (e.g. child care, socialising, exercising) and work out how many hours you have left. Even one extra hour represents a huge amount of time which could be spent on self-improvement or other tasks.

  1. Free work time

Like the previous game, this exercise helps you to identify wasted or unused time during working hours. Split a page into eight boxes, with each box representing an hour spent at work. At the end of each hour, write down a rough representation of how you spent this time. For instance, 10 minutes making a cup of tea; 20 minutes replying to emails; 5 minutes chatting to colleagues; 15 minutes on a work call; and ten minutes writing up notes from the call. Be as honest as possible and at the end of the day you should have a great overview of how you actually spend your working time – and where you could optimise your time the next day.

  1. Mood chart

As before, split your working day into eight hours, and allocate a box for every hour. Then simply mark off each hour with a note detailing your overall mood – for instance, you may be feeling energetic, super-productive, sluggish, sleepy, positive or anxious. Do this every day for two weeks and you will start to notice patterns in your moods. Maybe you are more productive in the morning? If so, try to schedule your most difficult tasks before noon, when you can tackle them head-on.

  1. Priority shuffling

This is best carried out with a team. Give each person a piece of paper and a pen and give them one minute to list their work priorities from most important to least important. Repeat the task, but this time give them 30 seconds. The third time you repeat the task, give them 15 seconds. Then seven seconds, then three seconds. By the end of that third round, each person will have been forced to whittle down their priorities and identify their number one concern. This helps place your work priorities into perspective, so that you can focus on the things that really matter and stop worrying about the less important points.

  1. Reaction training

Quick reactions lead to increased confidence and the ability to better manage your workload in a speedy and effective manner. Reaction training can help to build confidence in your ability to react quickly to any given situation. There is a huge range of reaction training games both online and via the various app stores. They include games such as Diner Dash, Overcooked, Farm to Fork, and YouTubers Life. These games are fun, free and accessible and allow you to hone your time management and productivity skills in your own time, and in an enjoyable form.

  1. The pomodoro technique

The pomodoro technique is a well-known method for increasing productivity – and it can easily be gamified. It is based on the idea that you work as hard as possible for 25 minutes, then take a five-minute break. After you have done this four times, you can take a longer break – of 15-30 minutes. You can turn this into a game by using your five-minute breaks to do something creative like knitting, plant care, painting, food preparation, or meditation. By the time you have completed four pomodoro cycles, and you are ready for your longer break, you will be amazed at how much you have managed to achieve within just a couple of hours.

What next?

If you want to learn more about the time management solutions that we offer, our team at Practical Software is here to help. 

With a long track record of excellent results, and years of experience operating in the recruitment sector, we can work with you to understand your specific business needs and ensure you can deploy a solution that is truly fit-for-purpose. If you have any specific questions about how this software can be customised for your recruitment agency, please do not hesitate to contact us directly and let us know exactly what you need for an effective, efficient deployment.