For many starting entrepreneurs the largest limitation they speak of initially is money and cash. But any seasoned entrepreneur and even business professional knows that the largest limitation for their work is time.
In your typical day, how much of it gets dictated TO you and how much of it is dictated and determined BY you? If you are spending more than 50% of your time with your tasks, timelines and schedule being dictated by someone else then you have a productivity problem!
While other people are all too willing to fill your calendar, fill your task list and fill your head, your job is to fight them off and take control again.
Your job is:
1) To recognize that your time is YOUR time and that no one makes you do anything … you accept it. In fact, most people accept everything put on their desk without ever any push back, clarification or re-defined timeline.
2) To accept and demand that the people you work with will work around some of your guidelines for your time when you set them, communicate them and stick to them. Try no meetings before 10am on any day so you have a set personal work time each day and even management will tend to try to accommodate you.
3) Each day establish what is most important in your day and what YOU need to get done to maximize the impact (not just the workload) you can make.
4) To set time guidelines that give you more freedom and not become more cumbersome. Are you often saying yes without really considering how this impacts your other work or your life?
5) Look at what you can delegate in your work and personal life to free up time … list off 10 things you don’t like to do and start there. This is critical for entrepreneurs and managers – great delegators are great business builders.
Taking all your cues from other people and allowing them to manage all your time is easy. It’s the easy way out. Unfortunately it also puts someone else’s convenience, plan and agenda ahead of yours.
You need to start to test the boundaries of what you can control TODAY. When people take control of even small pieces of their time they start to realize they control all of it! Recognition of control is the first step in time management that many courses and books forget to mention. Yet great time management starts in your head not in your calendar. Need help breaking through the barriers on your time, ask us for help!