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Winning The Fight Between You And The Clock


"Slaves to the clock" was the cover story in the March issue of CEO magazine.

"You can never out work a problem, you have to out think it." said A.G. Lafley, Proctor & Gamble's CEO."

Too much to do. Too little time. It's a universal problem. From the CEO to the newest hire.

We're bombarded with information. E-mail, faxes, voice mail, overnight deliveries and old-fashioned snail mail. Unexpected phone calls, impromptu meetings, and emergencies that force us to drop everything.

So many projects, tasks, problems, opportunities, and people are fighting for our time and attention that it's almost impossible to separate the important from the urgent from the unnecessary.

With so much clutter it's easy to lose track of long- and short-term goals. And... the proposal that's got to be finished by 3:00 p.m. this afternoon.

It's easy to spend eight, ten, or twelve hours each day doing things that don't have any real payoff.

And we wonder why we feel like we're stuck in quicksand. The more we struggle the deeper we sink.

"P&G's Lafley says, "I'm here by 7:00 a.m. so that gives me a stretch of uninterrupted thought before the workday officially swings into action and the phones start ringing." "

Time is the one thing that limits us. The common lamentation is 'If only I had more time.' That's the wrong premise.

The problem is we're using our valuable and precious time, in unproductive and non-rewarding ways.

Busy... yes. Productive... NO!!!

Think differently. Don't manage your time.

Do come in early so you can get some work done before everybody else arrives? Before the phone starts ringing? Before your meetings start?

Before the day - and your schedule - falls apart because of the many fires you must put out?

Fires! Fires! Fires!

Someone didn't do what they were supposed to do, when they were supposed to do it. Now it lands on your desk.

You're forced to drop everything and put out the fire. Your whole day goes up in smoke and you don't realize that somebody's guilty of arson.

To be successful in today's highly-competitive world you must be focused. You must have long and short-term goals.

When you know where you want to go, it's easy to determine whether or not the work, tasks, and projects you're working on will take you there.

Here are three strategies you can use to leverage your time:

1. Block out time for yourself. Close the door. Turn off the phone. And give yourself an hour of uninterrupted time each day.

2. Work on your most important work, tasks and projects. Only do the things that have value. Eliminate everything else.

3. Use your Prime Time. There's a time of day when you do your best work. When you've the most energy and enthusiasm. Tackle your most important work at the time of day you're at your best.

Set your goals. Leverage your time. And you'll become more successful than you ever dreamed.

(c) 2004, Jeffrey J. Mayer

About The Author

Reprinted with permission from Jeffrey Mayer's SucceedingInBusiness.com Newsletter. Jeff helps individuals, business owners, corporate executives and sales professionals set their priorities, get focused, and achieve their goals; so they can grow their business, get ahead in life, and live their dreams. To subscribe to Jeff's free newsletter, Jeff@SucceedingInBusiness.com


MORE RESOURCES:

Time Management - Google News

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Time 2 is the second version of an app Singh developed while in high school. “It came out of necessity because I never could stay focused on homework for a long time,” Singh said. “But if I had something pressuring me to get my work done, even just a ...

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Entry 26: One Fight at a Time - War on the Rocks


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COLUMN: Time management proves necessary skill - The Daily Toreador


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I have what most people would call a time- management issue. It is a trait I refer to more accurately as a time-optimism issue. This is the best way I know how to describe it. I too often believe that life will always provide another hour, another 10 ...

2018 Time Management Tips That Work | Benzinga - Benzinga


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Early in the year, after the holiday festivities have subsided, is a perfect time to invest in improving your time management skills and get more of the right work done in less time with less stress. According to Lynn Sherman, President of PEPworldwide ...

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Time management problems? You might be asking the wrong questions - SmartCompany.com.au


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Viewed from a different perspective, Gilkey points to energy and attention as being more scarce than time. “People who think they have time management problems really have priority management problems, which means, at root, they have self-management ...

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As the second semester of the academic year begins at Arizona State University, many freshmen are facing the reality that they need to build up an important skill for college life: time management. Many freshmen are overwhelmed by the unstructured ...

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Attention management is more than not looking at social media every five minutes—though it's also that, too. It's also about setting priorities and focusing your attention where it matters. And where it matters is often “deep work.” Rao divides ...

The 3 Mistakes I Made Learning To Manage Time - Forbes


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As a CEO, smart time management is critical to success. Let me tell you a dirty little secret: It doesn't always come naturally, especially to entrepreneurs that become executives. When I was just starting out as an executive, I found myself struggling ...

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