I recently wrote a post about my recent absence from blogging. The post was an in-depth look at what happens when the worst-case scenario for a growth-oriented business happens. I was hit full force by the Law of Sacrifice and lived to tell about it by following a few simple steps using what I call, Leadership Time Management.
On the verge of a major departmental overhaul, I received the news that a key member of my implementation team would be leaving. I was happy for her. She’d found an opportunity that fit her life like a glove. She’d continue doing what she loved, have a chance to utilize he native language, and work closer to home. As a growth-oriented leader, I’ve grown to experience great joy in seeing those around me grow, change, and move up, whether that is with us or apart from us. It just couldn’t have been worse timing.
Standing on the verge of a new horizon for the company, I chose to give up to go up and thankfully, my family and friends were all in with me. My world instantly shrunk and my available time for anything other than accomplishing my goal vanished. Unfortunately, the events of the world that required my time did not shrink.
I had to use my Leadership Time Management to prioritize my precious time. It is not enough to focus on your own needs, goals, and ambitions as a leader. You have the responsibility of continuing to lead your team and those around you. Leadership does not wait for you to mark off your to-do list. Your leadership is omnipresent, even in times of great chaos, making Leadership Time Management critical to your ability to influence those around you.
Delegate – If someone can do it 80% as well as you, let them. During this crunch time, I learned to rely heavily on those around me. I chose to delegate without fear and relied on Wendy, my eaHELP Virtual Assistant, to manage my schedule, process my emails, and keep me sane.
Outsource – A critical element of Leadership Time Management is sucking the most out of every 24 hours you have. How can you clean the house, write that report, watch your children, prepare that presentation, and still have time to focus on the big challenge before you? Outsource it. Hire people and let your money do the work for you. A housekeeper, VA, babysitter, secretary, and you, can get all of the above done at the same time.
Review – Taking the time to stop for 15 minutes and reset is more valuable than spending that 15 minutes working. As Mater so eloquently put in in Cars “Ain’t no need to watch where I’m goin’; just need to know where I’ve been.”
Improve Synthesis – In a desire to keep my blog going, I’ve been forced to find a new time to write. I struggled for nearly a month and came to the sad realization that there was actually zero time for writing in my current day. So I made time. Part of Leadership Time Management is re-engineering your input and output. After research and trial, I was able to create and hour and a half per day by adopting a Biphasic Sleep Schedule.
Input – Real Leadership Time Management encompasses not only managing your time but how efficiently you can use that time. Have a candy bar and wait 30 minutes. As your blood sugar rises, you’re effectiveness will decrease, suddenly plummeting as insulin production spikes. You’ll find yourself lazy, tired, and fatigued. That is certainly no way to achieve maximum output. Read more about using food to become a super human leader in my Fit to Lead Series.
Communicate – Drowning under your to-do list may make communication seem like a waste of your time. Human interaction can actually break up the monotony and increase creativity. It is also an essential leadership tool used to help those you’ve outsourced and delegated to achieve the success you desire.
It was like falling asleep on the beach and waking up after the tide had risen. One minute I was enjoying the sun, the next I was drowning. I began walking toward the shore. It was all up hill but the farther I walked the closer I was to surfacing again. Learning these principles of Leadership Time Management on the fly was difficult. Fortunately, they ultimately proved to be the priceless key that opened the door to a successful succession and implementation.
What upcoming project of yours could benefit from Leadership Time Management?