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  • feedwordpress 08:00:33 on 2020/04/07 Permalink
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    How to Be Focused and Productive in a Crisis 


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    In times of crisis, when everyone is anxious and uncertain about the future, it’s understandably hard for people to stay on track. In those moments it’s especially important that leaders work to keep everyone focused and productive while coping with ambiguity and uncertainty. Here are some tips for helping your employees stay healthy, connected, and focused:

    Begin with yourself. You will be better able to support your team and model resiliency if you can acknowledge and manage your own stress and anxiety. As I have said for years, what you don’t own will end up owning you—so take the time to understand what you are feeling and name your emotions. Ask yourself, “As a leader, who am I going to be in this time of crisis?” and lead by example.

    Tell the truth, even if it’s harsh. Some leaders think they’re protecting people by not acknowledging difficult truths or uncertainty, but that’s not an effective—or ethical—approach. Tell the truth. Acknowledge what’s happening—including what you don’t know—keep communication flowing, and let people know their concerns are being addressed. At the same time, work to help your team stay inspired, connected and motivated.

    Help people manage their stress. Especially if your processes have changed dramatically, some of your team members may be feeling lost, unproductive and discouraged. Do what you can to let them know what they’re feeling is normal, and coach your people on stress management and self-compassion in unpredictable times. In your words and your actions, the message should always be “We’re in this together.”

    Meet people where they are, not where you want them to be. It’s important to stay in close contact with your people. Talk to them and, especially, listen to them. Work to truly understand what they think and feel, and respond to their questions and worries. Genuine listening forms a bond of trust that motivates people and helps in resolving their concerns.

    Focus on what you can control. When things feel out of control, it’s almost impossible for people to maintain focus. Do whatever you can to foster a sense of control in your team members, even if it’s only over their own actions and work schedule. Giving your employees a chance to shift their thinking to manageable issues and areas they can control will help them reduce stress and stay grounded.

    Remind them to care for themselves. It may sound strange and awkward, but when people are caught up in a crisis and the anxiety of tough times part of the leader’s job is to remind them to take care of themselves. Help your team stay focused by encouraging them to sleep, eat, exercise and spend some time outdoors. Model good self-care habits for them and encourage discussion of innovative ways to stay healthy.

    Lead from within: Employees often become unfocused and unproductive when a crisis hits. What you do in that moment will either help them or hurt them, so give them the words and example they need to stay focused so you can weather the crisis together.

     


    #1 N A T I O N A L  B E S T S E L L E R

    The Leadership Gap
    What Gets Between You and Your Greatness


    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now

     


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:

     

    Photo Credit: iStockPhotos

    The post How to Be Focused and Productive in a Crisis appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:11 on 2019/10/03 Permalink
    Tags: , focus, , , , , ,   

    7 Important Tips to Help You Focus on Your Work 


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    Do you find it hard to focus on your work? If so, you’re far from alone. It’s important to stay focused and distraction-free, but that’s especially difficult with multiple projects in play and a steady stream of emails, phone calls and petty tasks constantly beckoning.

    Focusing at work is like going to the gym every day—it’s largely a matter of building good habits. Here are some tips to help you get started:

    Planning. Staying focused starts with planning ahead, and it begins the night before. Before you go to bed email yourself at least three goals for tomorrow. The next day you will have them to start your day off right. Planning ahead helps you focus on what you need.

    Batching. If you have small tasks on your to-do list, you may be tempted to work on several at once—in other words, to multitask. It’s nice to think you can work more efficiently by doing more than one thing at a time. In reality, though, every time you change or switch tasks, your brain takes time to re-focus, making it harder to accomplish the things you need to do.

    Chunking. Large, complex tasks are typically hard to get done all at once. Try breaking up larger tasks into smaller chunks and setting mini-deadlines for each chunk. Think of your mini-deadlines as checkpoints to keep yourself accountable.

    Scheduling. The best way to stay on task is to make a list of things to do, set priorities and create a schedule. Once you know your personal and professional tasks are accounted for on your schedule, you can free yourself from the nagging feeling that you’re forgetting to do something.

    Blocking. Block out any distractions that keep you from being focused; avoid the things that interrupt you. Build in specific times to answer emails, phone calls and texts so you aren’t constantly checking in. If you find that you’re constantly drawn to email, the web, or social media, block them for periods of time.

    Tracking. Time is the one resource that cannot be replenished, and tracking how much time you spend on what each day will clue you in to the things that are getting more than their share. Technology makes tracking your time easier than ever.

    Customizing. For maximum efficiency, customize your approach to managing tasks and projects. Some people organize assignments according to the order in which they are due, while others tackle tasks in order of difficulty. Consider the time of day your energy is highest and schedule your most challenging and visible work then. Consider the ways you work best and implement them to improve your focus.

    Lead from within: If you have trouble staying focused at work, there are steps you can take to minimize distraction and maximize your effectiveness.


     

    #1  N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R

    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

     

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now

     


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:

     

    The post 7 Important Tips to Help You Focus on Your Work appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:24 on 2019/08/27 Permalink
    Tags: , focus, , , , ,   

    How to Avoid Distractions and Focus on What Matters 


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    Too many of us can’t remember the last time we were truly able to focus on a task without getting distracted. There is always something clamoring for our attention: the phone, notifications, emails, texts, people dropping in, on and on.

    If we give in to distraction, the harm goes beyond the immediate effects. Left unchecked, distraction can actually destroy our ability to focus. So how do we get back to a reality where we can reserve our attention for the things that will help us meet our goals?

    Here are some effective ways to overcome distraction and focus on the things that matter:

    Identify what’s important. Before you can stop being distracted you have to understand your priorities. When you have clarity about the things that matter, you have clarity about the things that don’t.

    Start your day off right. Create a morning routine to give yourself structure and a sense of what you want to accomplish that day. A morning ritual not only starts your day off right but enables you finish the day off right.

    Create a day plan. Write yourself a timeline of tasks and events you want to accomplish for the day, laying out everything you need to immediately get to work on. I usually advise my clients to put these plans on an index card and to include five tasks or events that need to do that that day.

    Prioritize your list. Look at what is important and what is urgent. Use the Eisenhower box. Developed by Dwight Eisenhower—who was not only a two-term US president but also a five-star general and president of Columbia University—it divides tasks into four simple categories.

    In the top left corner, headed Important and Urgent, you might put things like crises, deadlines, and problems.

    The top right corner, Important and Not Urgent, could consist of things like relationships, planning for long-term projects, and recreation.

    The bottom left corner, Not Important and Urgent, might consist of interruptions, meetings, and activities.

    The bottom right corner, Not Important and Not Urgent, might consist of time wasters, pleasant activities, and trivial tasks.

    The Eisenhower box helps prevent a common misstep in daily planning. Most of us default to doing urgent tasks first, but we should instead keep our focus on important tasks.

     Urgent tasks always come up, and there will always be more urgent tasks than you have time to accomplish no matter how hard you try. The only way to turn an important task into an urgent task is to give it a deadline.

    Establish boundaries. An effective way to avoid distractions is to let people know you are going to be offline, or you are not going to be answering emails, or your door will be closed and you won’t be accessible. Establishing these boundaries allows you to manage your time to focus, and it helps others manage their time by knowing when you are and aren’t available for routine concerns.

    Pace yourself. Learn to give each task your full attention: don’t rush or think you have to do it quickly because you have so much to get done. Every time you switch your attention from one task to another and then back again, there’s a cost.

    Stop overcommitting. The best way to make sure you have time for what matters is to stop saying yes to everything. The best leaders have perfected the art of saying no so they can say yes to what is important.

    Most people don’t know why they have no time to do the things that matter to them. Most of us are simply reacting to life, instead of responding to our priorities, and we become so accustomed to it that we don’t realize we are creating a reality we don’t even want.

     Lead from within: The way to concentrate on what matters is to get rid of the distractions that keep us away.

     


    #1  N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R

    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness


    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now

     


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:

     

    Photo Credit: istockphoto

    The post How to Avoid Distractions and Focus on What Matters appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 19:20:19 on 2016/12/14 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , focus, , holiday, , , , , , , resilience, , , , , , ,   

    12 Days of Christmas Webinar: Must-Have Skills for 2017 


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    What are the eight must-have skills for executive and administrative assistants for today? As you enter into 2017, be sure you are equipped with this top-notch skill set. Joan also talks about one bonus skill, tune in to see what it is.

    We invite you to watch the webinar replay: Must-Have Skills for 2017

    Webinar Resources & Follow-up Links

    Download the Webinar Handout: Must Have Skills For 2017

    Download the Chat Archive: Day 10 Chat Archive 12 Days

    Download Your Certificate of Attendance: Certificate-Of-Attendance-Must Have Skills

     

    Bonus Resources

    Resilience Article by Joan Burge (Executive Secretary Magazine)

    The Revolutionary Assistant Article by Joan Burge (Executive Secretary Magazine)

    Reminder to check out the Focus Video Links Joan talked about in Day 1.

    Watch the documentary Paper Clips (Shared by Michelle P.)

    Revolutionary Assistant Printable for Your Desk: REVOLUTIONARY-HANDOUT-Office-Dynamics

    Dr. Daren Martin, book, A Company of Owners

    In the chat attendees were also talk about Slack, Microsoft Lynch, Skype for Business, Jabber and more!

    Special Offers

    To redeem this offer, simply add this item to your shopping cart and the price will be reduced! No coupon code necessary.

     

    Catch up with all the 12 Days of Christmas Webinars

    1. Get Things Done & Control Your Day
    2. Goal Setting & Branding Yourself for 2017
    3. Question & Answer with administrative expert, Joan Burge
    4. The Accelerated Assistant
    5. Riding the Wave of Change
    6. Live Your BIG Life in 2017
    7. The Organized Admin Book Interview with Julie Perrine
    8. Building a Strong (Star) Partnership with Your Boss
    9. Strategies for Being a World Class Assistant

     

    We would love to hear from you. How are you enjoying this webinar series? Also, Joan asked in this webinar, how are you going to grow in the area of collaboration in 2017? Share in the comments below.

    The post 12 Days of Christmas Webinar: Must-Have Skills for 2017 appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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