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Time Management - 9 December 2008

There was a time when you’d ask someone the question “how are you” and the common response you’d get back would be “good thanks”. But now the world has embraced the “so busy” phenomenon, where people’s first reaction is to share with you how overloaded they are with work. If this is you, guess what? No-one cares how busy you are.


Regardless, you're smart enough to know that spending time with your employees whether it's via coaching, motivating, building relationships, or any other genuinely important task, is vital to management success. The problem is that there's a lot of 'stuff' that gets in the way.

So my message today is about “stuff”.


  • Don’t confuse ‘activity’ with ‘productivity’. Just because you’re busy doing stuff doesn’t mean your focus is in the right place.

 

It’s like being at the gym and pumping weights for three hours when a one-hour run on the treadmill might get you better results. At work, maybe you need to readjust your focus. If meetings and reports are consuming your time, perhaps you’re focusing your attention on the wrong areas.

  • Get clear on your objectives. Or you’ll get caught up doing the wrong stuff.

It’s like being stuck in quicksand and trying to kick yourself free. The more kick, the more you’ll sink. At work, determine your real overriding objective. Whatever activity you do that takes up your time must lead you to the achievement of that objective. If it doesn’t, dump it.

  • Time management isn’t about how fast you get through stuff. It’s about what you do and why you do it.

 

It’s like being focused on living until the age of 100 then finally reaching that milestone before realising that you haven’t really truly lived. At work, identify the tasks that only you must absolutely do. Everything else can be delegated to others who’ll find real meaning in it.

It all comes down to this: If you know you need to spend more time with your team but you’re just trying to “find” the time, it won’t happen. You can never ‘find’ time – you can only ever ‘make’ it.

 

To download complimentary e-books on employee engagement, retention, and recruitment (valued at over $100), please click here.

 

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