kc 1I have always thought of myself as one of the hardest workers I know. No doubt my commitment and drive were at the core of this, but was I working harder than I needed to? Time management has been a lifelong journey for me; My biggest enemy, believe it or not is…email. If you send me a message, I’ll get back to you in a flash…I wore that like a badge! I even held it as a standard for my teams to aspire to… but why? Answering too many emails can throw off your focus sending you into a completely different direction…the next thing you know – you have been at work for 12 hours with at least 5 more to go.  Sure, sometimes questions need to be answered ASAP but other than that why couldn’t it wait until the end of their day or the time set aside for it?
Another enemy?…Unnecessary distractions. I took pride in my open door policy: “I am available whenever you need me.” That opened me up to many brainstorming sessions that I didn’t need to be involved in. It actually limited the growth of my people…not everything needed my involvement. Now that I have my own business I have to stay focused or things just will not get done; there is so much to do and I have to leave empty space in my day to THINK…new ideas, concepts, inspiration for new sales, clients & associates.  With radical change came major rewards, and my level of efficiency has never been better.
This brings me to the first article of the day…if I had read this years ago I would have saved myself many a 20 hour work day. These are the articles simple steps:
1.     Plan your day.
2.     Manage distractions.
3.     Don’t do what others can do.
Now, take a minute to check out this article…seriously. The article covers a Google employee – or ‘Googler’ – named Jeremiah Dillon, who strives to better manage time. He composed an email on the subject, perfectly entitled, “If you don’t have time to read this… read it twice.” In the message, and the subsequent jubilant video that followed, Dillon discusses the some of the exact time-management tools: Planning your day, avoiding distractions, working with the flow of the week, and becoming a ‘maker’ instead of a manager.
These are important concepts, and the latter point reminds me that our jobs are still creative. Though there are certainly managers among the people that I consult, even managers design new ideas. Managers CAN be ‘makers.’ They think of projects, they formulate plans, they build the tools to overcome obstacles. When we view work as construction, projects seem more real… almost ethereal. Therefore, that work can feel more satisfying. Best of all, when work is invention, we play. Even as a business, management, and hospitality consultant, I create, I build, and I play. It’s effective for time management, sure, but it’s downright fun and rewarding!

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