Creating the space to lead…how should I spend my time?

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Should I re-visit our strategy?
Should I take that important client out to dinner?
Should I spend more time on the commercial aspects of that deal?
Should I check the board meeting agenda?
Should I get into the field with the team?
Should I review how we are going hit target this quarter?
Should I focus on getting the right organisational structure?
Should I spend some time coaching my new directors?
Should I spend time writing this blog?

This is called ‘shoulding’ all over yourself and the problem arises because the answer to all of these questions is ‘yes!’ Most leaders are under such pressure today, “it’s like having a fire hose in my mouth, and I just don’t have time to breathe”.

Organisations have become so lean, leaders have a vast array of responsibilities or should I say tasks that they need to complete before they can allocate time to focus on leadership. However will this micro level focus get us out of the current economic downturn?

How do the best leaders actually allocate their time and how can you be confident you are spending your time in the ‘right’ way?

The first step is to make a conscious choice as to how you will prioritise your time and if you are struggling with this question then this is where an executive coach can provide invaluable support.

Get you PA to categorise your diary for the last 3 months to show how you have spent your time – it may just be the shock you need to do things differently.

Once you have a clear vision of how you should best spend your time and a good understanding of the gap, you must follow through with relentless self challenge; Do I really need to be there? Who else could own the outcome? Can I dial in for part of the meeting?

I find that it is useful to sit these questions within the following context:
• The first role of the leader is to make sure that all your people have clarity as to what they need to do and why.
• Every time you say ‘yes’ to something unimportant you are saying ‘no’ to something important.

So I’d love to hear your answers to the following:
How do you think you should be spending your time?
What ideas do you have as to how to ensure your time is dedicated to the right activities?

Marc@bluesky

Marc Jantzen - Blue Sky Performance Improvement

www.blue-sky.co.uk

Blue Sky Performance Improvement

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