Tag Archive: delegate

The dust from the holidays has started to settle and it’s time to get back on track.  If you’re still looking back at 2011, tie up the loose ends and let it go.  If there are things that you didn’t accomplish before it ended, bring those things into the new year, determine where they fit, how you’re going to handle them and move forward.  2012 is here and it packs a powerful punch.  It’s time out for all of the mediocrity and playing small.  There is absolutely no place for that any longer and you’ve got to be ready to take things on.   If you’re not ready for that punch coming your way, you’re in big trouble.

If you weren’t on point last year it’s likely that your business probably didn’t generate the amount of money you wanted it to.  Simply put, that didn’t happen because you didn’t set things up that way.  You had ideas or maybe even goals, but no plan to carry them out.  If this is what happened to you, it’s possible that:

  • Your office isn’t organized and you wasted time all year long looking for things or reinventing others because you couldn’t find them.
  • You don’t have systems in place and your habits don’t support you.
  •  There never seems to be enough time to get everything done.

It’s time to stop the madness. Pull out all of the stops and get it in gear.  Let go of the chaos and recommit yourself and set the stage for success.  You have goals that you want to accomplish inside of your business. You need to set the stage for success, which means having an organized space, calendar and tools to support all there is to do this year.

  • Get rid of the resolutions that you made and turn them into S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals.  Resolutions don’t have staying power; goals do.
  • Organize your office and create systems and processes that work for you and support you.  This streamlines things and keeps you from wasting time and losing money.
  • Create habits that support you and get rid of the ones that don’t
  • Get the help that you need and start delegating things that you don’t have to do so that you can spend time on your money generating activities.
  • Create your plan for the year.  Get in the habit of scheduling your success, making the commitment in advance, and being decisive.  Without a plan, things begin to come apart at the seams.  It’s not going to happen if you don’t know how you’re getting there and what you need to make it happen.

If you aren’t able to do this on your own, get an accountability partner or a coach to help you get yourself organized, create your plan and carry it out.
Like I said, 2012 packs a punch. If you’re not ready, now is the time!  Invest the time in making these things happen so that you’re set up for success along the 2012 road.  Set yourself up for great things, create your plan, implement it and watch it all happen.

Being organized means more than just having an organized space that supports you.  It means that your time is organized well too.  A well organized space has a place for everything, everything in its easily retrievable place and systems that keep you on point and organized.

The example that I like to use to illustrate what I mean by that is a well organized closet.  Think about an empty closet.  Within it you have a limited amount of space to place your items.  You have at least one rack to fill and shelves as well.  Each hanger on the rack can hang a specific item.  If it’s overloaded, it’s likely that something is going to fall off of the hanger.  Additionally, only a set number of hangers are going to fit on each rack.  To better store items and maximize space you might even consider adding boxes or other storage containers which also have limited space.

Organizing time is like organizing space.  Each day is a container; a storage unit that has a definite capacity.  Just as you have a limited amount of space in your closet, you have a limited number of hours in every day.  What are you doing with the items you add to your calendar?  Are you randomly jamming them into your day at any available point in time like you might jam items into your closet?

Obviously, this is not the way you want to organize your calendar.  You want to strategically place items into specific slots of time just as you would want to place items into your closet in a way that they are easily visible and easily accessible.

When you go to add something to your calendar, stop for a moment and think about where it logically fits.  Are you getting ready to place it into a slot that allows you enough time to finish it, or are you getting ready to place it on top of something else simply because you don’t know where to place it or don’t have anywhere else to place it.  If your calendar is that jammed, it’s time for a complete overhaul.  Make the time to reorganize your calendar like you would reorganize your closet.  Look at everything that you have on hand as well as the time that you have available (the space) to get things done.  Are there things that you can get rid of or delegate?  Are there things that no longer fit?  Once you’re done reviewing everything, only place the remaining items on your calendar and organize them just as you would a closet.  Additionally, be realistic about the amount of time that things are going to take you to complete.  Don’t just shove things into your calendar, place things where they fit.  If they don’t fit, find an appropriate place for them.  Doing so has you respect your time.

We live in such an excessive society.  Everything is bigger these days-our homes, our cars (although that seems to be shifting), even the meals that we eat.  As a society we waste so much.

We also waste our time.  The difference is that time is something we don’t have in excess.  We each get the same amount of time each day and once it’s spent, it’s gone for good.

How much of your time are you wasting?  Do you honestly know where your time is going?  On average, individuals spend any where from 1.5 to 2 hours of each work day searching for things-files, documents on their computers, contact information, and the list goes on.  Not to mention the other ways that time gets wasted.  Multiply that wasted time by 5 work days and that’s 7.5 to 10 hours every week when nothing is getting done.  With typically 20 work days in each month, that’s 150 to 200 hours of wasted time every month for the average individual, which means that there are a lot of “to-dos” that aren’t getting done.

So, how do you know you’re wasting significant time?  Begin by looking for indicators:

  • Messy desk, cluttered work space, things not filed
  • Not being able to find things
  • Missing, being late for or often rescheduling appointments
  • Arriving to meetings unprepared
  • Tired and/or unable to concentrate

Once you’ve identified the indicators, work on the solutions:

  • Organize your entire work space
  • Determine your time management personality and establish a time management system that fits that personality
  • Plan your work-daily and weekly and prioritize your list
  • Focus on important and not urgent things (this comes into play once you establish good habits)
  • Eliminate procrastination
  • Delegate the things that you can
  • Learn your personal energy cycles and use them
  • Control interruptions effectively

When you begin working on the solutions, know that although you may be implementing things immediately, it takes at least 21 days to develop a new habit.  Allow yourself the time and the room to do so, and when you revert to old habits, simply acknowledge what you’re doing and get back on track.  It’s also a good idea to enroll someone in what you’re doing and ask for support as part of your system for getting a handle on managing your time effectively, and improving your productivity.  Remember, how you spend your time is what makes the difference and impacts your bottom line.

You have a mountain of things to do and you probably feel as though you don’t have enough time to get it all done.  The truth of the matter is that you have all the time that you need, and, you’re not going to get any more.

Given that reality, you have to make the shift and change your behaviors. One of the things that you can put into play to help you with getting everything done is to priorities your to-do items.  I always recommend the ABC method for prioritizing.

Priority A=something that must be done and will have great negative consequences if not completed.

Priority B=something that is important, but of course, not as important as an “A” priority.  If these things don’t get done, the consequences aren’t as great.

Priority C=Something that would be nice to do, but isn’t necessary and won’t cause a problem if it’s not done.

Priority D=DELEGATE!! Yes, I know how difficult you might find this to be, and you might say that by the time you show someone how to do the task, you could have done it yourself. Quite the opposite…when you delegate you’re getting back some of your time. It’s an investment. Just do it!

Priority E=ELIMINATE! That’s right. Eliminate it. Get rid of it. Take it off of your to-do list. It’s not important enough to belong there. Your focus belongs on the important stuff. Period!

Looking at the things that you’ve got to get done, determine which priority each one should have and assign them.  Ideally, when you create goals you should prioritize them, and let those priorities filter down to your daily to-do items.

To be successful at planning and productive, you’ve got to know your priorities.  If you don’t, you’ll kill your productivity.  To know what your priorities are, you have to start from the beginning.  Set time at the end of the year to set your goals for the coming year. During those sessions, set your goals and prioritize them.  When it comes time to place a related task on your daily to-do list, it will already have a priority level so there will be no confusion as to its importance.  This way, you’re not prioritizing your schedule; you’re scheduling your priorities.

Typically you should have 1-2 priority items to complete for the day.  To give you some information about prioritizing, I recommend the ABC method.  Of course a top priority or something that is very important would be an “A” task.  Things that have serious negative consequences fall under this category.  A “B” priority is considered important-not as important as an “A” task.  There are only minor negative consequences for not completing it. “C” priorities are things that would be nice to do, of course, not as important as A&B priorities and there aren’t any negative consequences for not completing them.

You can even take it a step farther.  Look at all of you’re a tasks and assign numbers to them so that you end up with A1, A2, etc.  Anything beyond a “C” priority is something that can be delegated or eliminated altogether.  Get your priorities in order and revive your productivity.

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