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Leadership Tools Monthly News, February 2010
March 01, 2010
Making Time For Leadership
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It’s always hard to believe how quickly the New Year passes. We never seem to have the time we’d like to get all of our projects done. With a struggling economy and the pressures of life in general, suffice it to say things probably won’t be getting any easier any time soon.
If only we could just take a day and sleep in, clear the fog and refuel our energy – but who can sleep when there is so much to do and so little TIME, right? With so much responsibility, rest and relaxation feels like a luxury that one can simply not afford. After all, someone’s got to make sure everyone is staying on track…. sound familiar?
In order for a great leader to be able to stay ahead of the curve and set a quality example for those under your supervision, consider these ideas for ways to improve your effectiveness at time management:
Schedule Thinking Time: Nothing is real until it’s scheduled – that’s a fact. If you don’t write it down, odds are you won’t get it done. Giving yourself time to think; to consider alternatives; to determine next steps and plan your next move, is critical for accomplishing the most important tasks of the day.
Research has proven that for every 1 hour invested in planning activities, you will save 3 to 4 hours in completing the task.
Prioritize Your List: Making a list and checking it twice is simply not good enough. On a daily basis you should be reviewing your most important tasks and prioritizing them based on importance.
Be sure to spend the majority of your time on the BIG issues, not on all the little stuff that will eat up your highly valuable and limited time.
Be Reasonable: Regardless of how carefully you plan your day, unexpected things will happen that will demand your attention. When this happens quickly take care of whatever emergency presents itself, then get back to your most important task as quickly as possible.
If you have another leader on your team who can keep the ball rolling in your absence, delegate some responsibility. This gives them an opportunity to shine and provides you with an opportunity to assess their progress as a leader and to provide positive feedback.
Limit Email: On average people spend 2 to 3 hours per day reading and managing their email. Try turning off your email with the exception of 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the late afternoon. Most likely you will find that you if you are focused you can successfully read and respond to all your email within this shorter period of time. Try it!
Opt-Out More Often - Many leaders find it difficult to say “No”, which only ensures that the number of issues they must manage continues to increase. While it’s admirable to step up and take on additional roles and responsibilities, you must make certain that you are not doing so by risking the quality of the outcome for your existing goals.
By opting out more often you will be certain that your existing projects provide the greatest rewards for your team and your organization.
From a leadership perspective, the importance of time management cannot be overstated.
Because most leaders tend to be ambitious, self-driven (basically, work horses)- we too often run the risk of losing sight of the bigger picture when deciding how to best invest our time. This is why regular reminders are necessary.
In reading the above best practices for effective time management, it is my hope that you might recognize an area or two where you can make a slight adjustment in your daily routine and make better use of your time - possibly even take some well deserved "R & R" (rest and relaxation) time.
In conclusion, be sure to schedule time to learn and grow.
As a leader you must always continued to improve your skill-set. The opportunities to learn and grow may be right under your nose (or in the next section) :-)
I am excited to share with you that I was recently invited to participate as a featured speaker for an upcoming one-hour global teleclass. Honestly, I was a bit surprised when I got the call because I did not actively seek out this opportunity.
Funny thing about opportunity, it often finds you first. The key lesson is to always be prepared to take advantage of it when opportunity comes knocking.
At any rate, a representative from this particular speakers bureau stumbled upon Leadership-Tools.com and took time to watch our free teleseminar on how I ended up building my website.
Intrigued, he wanted to know more about how I built an online business in my spare time. After speaking with me for about 20 minutes, he offered me a prime slot on their April speaking calender. The date and time I will be speaking LIVE is April 27, 2010 at 9pm Eastern Time.
The subject of my teleclass is: 10 Steps to New Income - How to Profit by Doing What You Love
The reason I'm sharing this with you now is two-fold:
It's my understanding that seats (phone lines) will be limited so you'll want to respond quickly upon receiving the call-in information. Stay tuned!
I will provide you with a full list of all the speakers and course descriptions. You can listen to as many as you like.
If a certain subject hits home, you may decide to have your entire team listen in. Just one more way you can add quality tools to your leadership library.
It's funny really, how opportunity unexpectedly presents itself when you are willing to put yourself out there. I'm constantly amazed at all that I've received from simply doing my best to provide aspiring leaders with high-quality leadership tools.
During these tough economic times, I realize time is a luxury. However, if you have ever thought of owning your own business and you'd like to learn more about how you can profit from a hobby, a passion or an area of special interest - then I would encourage you to schedule time to attend my teleseminar.
For now, just consider this a friendly heads up. I'll be back with all the details soon.
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