Turning to Fall

The autumn equinox arrived yesterday evening at 9:04p EDT. For those of us in the northern hemisphere, it marks shorter daylight hours and cooler weather. The current indicator of change is that it gets light later in the morning and gets dark earlier in the evening.

Different cultures commemorate the equinox with various customs. I typically notice a shift in the workplace at this time of the year. The looser environment of summer transitions into more of a settled and focused workplace.

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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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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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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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“Reboot” Your Mindset

Remember the strategies and goals that you started the year with back in January? It seems impossible to believe that we have barely three weeks left in 2020. Clearly, many of the hopes, plans, and aspirations with which we began the year were dashed and sucker punched.

But remember, it’s not what happens to you that matters, rather it’s what you do about what happens to you.

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Mind Your Time

No matter what your political leaning, I’m sure you’ll agree that this week’s U.S. presidential election has been a gigantic distraction. I wonder how much productivity has tanked as a result of election watch.

As this disruption is likely to continue for the time being, it’s a good time to review tips to stay focused during times of major distraction.

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What’s Your Spin Trigger?

You know the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. We all succumb to this from time to time. And when it happens, it’s not always easy to snap out of it.

During challenging economic times we don’t have time to be “insane”. We need to do. We need to be productive. We need results.

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Energy Management

It’s already the end of January, and if you’re like many people, you’ve been striving to hit and maintain a better stride. Achieving professionals are always trying to go up a notch, and January is the month when it’s most noticeable.

To keep your momentum going, scope out the year and see what you can do to gradually keep your momentum going each month. The key is “gradual”, so think marathon, not sprint.

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Do You Have a System to Manage Deadlines?

Most deadlines aren’t just one giant event happening on a given day. Rather, there are myriad small deadlines that lead up to that big event.

Managing multiple deadlines is challenging, and I’ve found that one system doesn’t fit every person. You need to proactively find a system that works best for you and implement it consistently.

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