A Leader’s Greatest Challenge: Time Management

If there is one invention that could change the way leaders operate, but has yet to be developed (that we know of), it is the time machine.

Consider what you could do with all the time in the world! You could take sky-diving lessons, learn two foreign languages, watch all the Marvel movies back-to-back. Or, less loftier goals…answer all those emails (inbox zero—imagine!), figure out next year’s budget, or maybe have dinner with your family on time for once?

Sadly, time machines still only exist in science fiction. And we have to make do with reality and the twenty-four hours we are given every day.

Now, you don’t have to tell us: not having enough time in a business day is a struggle! Time management is something that every leader faces and it’s not easy to overcome. A critical piece of dealing with the time management issue is changing your frame of mind. What do we mean by that? Let’s discuss.


Changing your Frame of Mind

Leaders at every level constantly complain that they are pulled in a hundred different directions and never have time to do what really matters.

Well. That’s a problem. What are you doing, if not the most important things?

Some leaders think that tackling the easiest things first will make that to-do list shorter and make you feel like you’re moving forward. We have a word for that: procrastination. It’s a four-letter-word around here and we don’t want to see your organization suffer because of it. Focusing on your true priorities, even if they might be hard or long, is what makes you move ahead in your organization, in leaps and bounds.

But what about tasks that are immediate? What about putting out all those fires that you must immediately attend to or something terrible will occur? We’ll admit, these tasks are harder to ignore. And there’s certainly an argument to those completely unavoidable fires, but you have to take a moment to look at the big picture. Is this fire your dealing with really that big in the scheme of things? Is it worth your time, for you, the leader?

The big takeaway here is that your time is IMPORTANT so you should be doing the IMPORTANT things.


How to Change

In the coming posts we will explore how you can truly master this frame of mind by homing in on these three key aspects of leadership:

  1. Discipline – Being disciplined means not letting those smaller, easier tasks distract you from the bigger, harder, game-changing ones.
  2. Priorities – Understanding and following the order of your tasks and not letting distractions consume your days.
  3. Communication – Communicating with your team that you are focusing on certain things and you need time that is not interrupted.

Stay tuned for the next blogs in this Time Management for Leaders series where you will come to understand how these three aspects can make transform your days and make them longer…almost as if we’re giving you a key to a time machine.