Next Level Leaders – Managing Time and Priorities, 2

Last time, we looked at four areas of focus as a foundation for good time management when you’ve been promoted into a new managerial role. To review, these include managing priorities, determining needs of your new director reports, managing projects, and fitting in with the pace of the environment.

Today we’ll look at a way you can plan and manage your time through determining the level of importance and urgency for your tasks. This method went into broad based use from Stephen Covey’s The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

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Behavioral Goal Setting

To set and attain goals is an important process for nearly all high-achieving leaders. Whether you go through a formal process to set and monitor goals, or informally record your aspirations, the desired outcome is the same.

People typically identify tasks or activities as the stepping stones for goal achievement. For example, if you want to achieve a certain revenue number in your department, you can divide that number among your employees resulting in a goal of x dollars per employee.

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Thoughts on Freedom and Food

As Independence Day in the United States occurs on Monday, it’s an appropriate time to reflect on freedom and food. If you hadn’t thought of pairing those two topics together, it’s a natural given the holiday.

Any time I hear people say that they’re trapped in their lives, they’re implicitly saying that they don’t feel free. But it also infers that they are holding themselves as victims to their circumstances. Victims are not free; they are captive to their conditions.

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Laser Focus

Something that differentiates top performers from others is that they stay focused on the end result. They don’t just write a report or complete an assignment; they think about how their work can have the greatest impact on the end result or user.

The workplace is filled with busy people, and some might offer the excuse that they’re just too buried to bring project x to the next level. Although this may be true, those who break through the busy-ness barrier do it regularly.

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Renewal

This weekend the holidays of Easter and Passover will be celebrated. Whether either is part of your tradition, celebrated formally or not, the feeling of renewal offers a time for hope and reflection.

Given the horrific events happening elsewhere in the world, especially the devastation in the Ukraine, we are blessed that we can pause and express gratitude for our individual circumstances.

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Time to Redd Up!

Spring has arrived. It’s that time of the year when once upon a time spring cleaning was the source of household activity. Some researchers attribute the origins to the Iranian Norouz, the Persian new year, which is also the first day of spring. Tradition was that Iranians would “shake the house” prior to and in anticipate of the new year.

Closer to home, a colloquial version is to “redd up,” like the verb, to rid, meaning “clear, put in order, clean up.” If you’ve ever lived or passed through Pittsburgh, PA, you’ve probably heard this expression!

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The Benefits of Patience

The more stressed people are, the more impatient they become. When impatient people congregate, mood and morale gets worse…and bad feelings accelerate.

Leaders know the value of patience. Those who exercise it regularly are rewarded by everything from diffusing people’s anxiety and bad moods to making better decisions.

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The Winter Solstice

The winter solstice took place in the northern hemisphere on Tuesday, December 21. Although many people simply think of this as the first day of winter and the shortest day of the year, it is a day that is celebrated in different cultures.

Psychologically, some believe that this is a time to release anything that doesn’t align with our highest purpose. Although presented somewhat differently, last week’s column discussed using year-end as a time to identify what you want to keep, what you want to add and what you want to eliminate from your life. Sounds similar, doesn’t it?

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Stop the Insanity!

Last time we talked about prioritizing activities that you want to complete by the end of the year. Another important exercise for year end is answering three questions to help you identify and reframe your activities in the new year.

While reflecting on these questions, keep in mind both professional and personal interests.

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Juggling Priorities

Many people take a deep breath at the beginning of December. The realization that there’s only one month left in the year comes as a shock, no matter how many times you’ve gone through it!

The people who succeed are those who manage their priorities effectively. Not all priorities are equal! On the other end of the spectrum are people who are unrealistic about what can actually be completed in the remaining available time.

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