Online Courses Review – Time Management

I agreed to review a course for High Speed Training way back in early February and picked Time Management as it’s one of my weaknesses. I hope I’m not alone in finding it ironic that I should take so long to review a time management course! Still, better late than never. High Speed Training offer a number of online training options including courses in everything from Basic Food Hygiene courses to Business Writing Skills. The flexibility and instant-access nature of the training makes them ideal for busy work at home mums looking to expand their skillset.

Once I’d chosen & confirmed my course choice, my login details were provided for the High Speed Training website. The process for getting started was as simple as you can make it: login, confirm details (including a postal address for the course certificate) and off you go.

After login, you’re presented with the course dashboard which includes information on your course process (0% at the moment) and your profile info with links to edit, and a short list of just some of the other courses that are available.

The course itself is broken down into multiple activities – perfect for me as I’m likely to be interupted by kids at any moment – with a course progress bar as motivation to get things finished in case I find myself distracted by Highly Important Activities like eating cake and wiping bums (you know, important day to day stuff.)

Beginning the course, immediately I felt the content of the slideshows ringing true with my individual circumstances. Without giving too much away about the contents I spotted several flaws in my day to day habits that are the root issues of my poor time management. Although I did note they were missing ‘facebook’ and ‘twitter’ from biggest time wasters ;)

My personal problem is that I see planning as a use of time, and when I have a lot of things to do that use of time seems like a waste: I could be doing stuff instead of just planning to do stuff! However, without getting my things in order I flit from one thing to another and so don’t achieve what needs doing. The course has helped me see that planning in the beginning actually improves the overall efficiency in the long haul, recouping the time spent planning and potentially more besides. Case in point: on the reflection exercise – “important elements of time management” I shook my head at all of them – oh dear!

The course activities are, or certainly in this case, a slideshow of text and images with some interactivity via buttons and quizes. The speed is entirely controlled by me – when I need to pause to wipe a snotty nose I’m not losing my place here.

Only flaw so far (apart from basically highlighting how ineffecient I am!) was that I got stuck on one slide where the next slide button refused to show; it took me a minute to figure out there was a button that had appeared outside of my view that I needed to use the down arrow to get to. I’m not sure how much this was affected by the fact I’m on my netbook with a tiny screen or perhaps that I’m running a Linux OS. Either way, it did not impact upon my finishing the activity.

One thing I did notice was at the end of every activity I was tempted to “just quickly check twitter”; this is the kind of mentality that sees me wasting 20 minutes on social networking rather than actual work (something that happens a little too often to be excuseable!) I did manage to resist – perhaps this time management malarkey is working already.

Highlights: aside from learning cool stuff, which is always a plus, I was impressed by how easy it was to dip in and out of the training module I’d chosen. I started the course in the morning, then had to do an emergency pre-school pickup & doctors appointment, and came back in the afternoon to pick up from the slide I left at. Even the final quiz is put-down-able & offers immediate feedback. I passed, of course, so there’s no excuse now for me to be procrasinating and messing up my time planning!

Now just to figure out which of these I can do next…