Wednesday, September 01, 2021

Self-Reflection: How Am I Spending My Time?

Many people complain about their daily or weekly schedule.  Too many meetings.   Too much time spent fighting fires.  Not enough opportunities to interact with customers and other external constituents.  While these complaints may be justified, many of us don't take the opportunity to periodically engage in serious self-reflection about how we allocate our time.  Leaders at all levels should make it a regular habit to examine their calendar and ask themselves a few questions:

  1. What types of activities are taking up most of my time?
  2. Are there some important activities that are not receiving sufficient attention?
  3. Who in the organization or outside the organization should I be spending more time with in the coming weeks and months?
  4. How can I build in some time into my calendar for broader strategic and long term thinking/planning?
  5. What activities do I need to reduce or even eliminate so as to make time for other important matters?
  6. Where in my schedule will I build in an opportunity for systematic, routine self-reflection, not just about the allocation of my time, but about other important aspects of my professional and personal life?

In short, let's all stop complaining about our schedule and start doing something about it.  Carve out the time needed to conduct critical work.   Question 5, though, will be the most difficult one.  We can't make time for crucial activities without taking some things off our plate.  We have to give up some activities to make time for others.  

No comments: