Dear Friends,

It’s summer and when you’re married to a teacher, it means your routine gets a little shake up for about ten weeks. So, I thought I’d shake up my newsletter routine this summer as well. Instead of the usual messages and A-ha!s, I’ll be sharing 7 quick reasons why timers make me happy, specifically in the workplace. My hope is that with a quick two-minute read, you’ll get those minutes back every day when you implement the tip! If you miss one, you can find it along with other A-ha! tips on this blog. 


Hope you enjoy this series and your summer! – Janet


Reason #1: A Timer Helps me Break Parkinson’s Law

“Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.”

I first heard of Parkinson’s Law* in college from Professor Gortner, a beloved business professor at Taylor University. Essentially the law says that if you have 8 hours to do a project, it will take 8 hours to do it even if it could have been done in less time. Conversely, if you only have an hour before something is due, you somehow manage to get it done in an hour.

the little trick I play on myself is to predetermine how much time I want to spend on a set of tasks or project, like catching up on email after a vacation or writing this newsletter. 😉 Then I set the timer and see if I can get it done before time is up.

This trick causes me to stay focused, move faster, make quicker decisions, and not spend half my day on something that just doesn’t need it. Of course, if you have a project that really requires 8 hours, you can’t set a timer for 2 hours and magically get it done. But this trick will help minimize wasted time.


*Per wiki in 2020: Articulated by Cyril Northcote Parkinson as part of the first sentence of an essay published in The Economist in 1955 and since republished online, it was reprinted with other essays in the book Parkinson’s Law: The Pursuit of Progress (London, John Murray, 1958)

One of my favorite timers (right) is from Time Timer, a company in Cincinnati. In future newsletters, I’ll be sharing more about how helpful this timer can be in the workplace. If you’d like to pick one up, you can find it, along with some of my other favorite resources, on our Products page.