While covering the federal beat for the Deseret News several years ago, an official told me that he would lose some of his vacation because he couldn't seem to get his work finished.

Every time Dec. 31 rolled around, he would kid me about getting so much vacation time and I replied that he had lots of vacation time accumulated and a person should take the vacation time coming to him.Time is a commodity that nobody can replace and every year it becomes increasingly difficult to get one's work done in the traditional eight-hour span, so extra hours are put in at work with family life and leisure time suffering.

Now there are people who spend all of their time writing books and teaching seminars on how to better manage time - anything from carrying a simple calendar of upcoming events to writing an agenda for meetings that limits each subject to a certain number of minutes so those attending expect to get on their way at a certain time.

One such person is Lauren R. Januz of the Timlet Corp., Lake Forest, Ill., a company offering free copies of a booklet containing 166 time-saving tips for executives that includes four free issues of Execu-Time, the company's newsletter.

Januz believes most executives, even graduates of the best business schools, were trained in the concepts of marketing, finance, etc. but most didn't get to some of the most important aspects of business life like delegating to a secretary, running an effective meeting, scheduling appointments and even using the telephone productively.

As a result, executives are losing several hours - hours than cannot be recalled - hours that could be spent on leisure time or with the family.

Most executives work 60-80 hours per week and Januz claims that by following his tips for time-saving, an executive can expect to cut his normal working time by two hours per day within 6 months to a year after starting a time management program.

"It is not uncommon for a business executive to find time for two extra rounds of golf a week as a result of good time management practices very soon after starting on a time management program," he said.

According to Timlet's newsletter, good health is a natural management tool. "Having the energy and strength to put in a good day's work and still enjoy a happy personal life is what good time management is all about," the newsletter said.

It suggests eating breakfast, eating balanced meals, avoiding snacking, not smoking, being careful of drinking, exercising daily, watching what you lift to avoid back problems, getting enough sleep, seeing a doctor regularly and watching the stressful situations.

Some other suggestions in the newsletter include having an agenda for meetings with times for the subjects, sometimes being alone to study complex problems, taking advantage of short-time interludes (like waiting to pick up a child at the swimming pool), listening to "learning" cassettes in your car while driving, cutting down on the times your are interrupted in a day and learning polite ways to end a conversation.