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  • feedwordpress 08:00:51 on 2018/07/17 Permalink
    Tags: , Get Work Done, , , Life Balance, , ,   

    How to Effectively Get the Right Work Done 

    We’re all ridiculously busy these days. Nearly every leader I talk to feels overloaded and overwhelmed. As crazy as it may seem to add something else to your to-do list, there’s no better time to invest some energy in thinking about how you work and finding ways to be more productive and effective, because the payoff will start immediately.

    Improving productivity has a lot to do with dealing more effectively with barriers, distractions and anything that interferes with your momentum. Here are some of the principles I use to help my clients get the right things done effectively. It can be helpful to think of them in terms of differences you can learn to recognize:

    The difference between being busy and being productive. A lot of people think they’re the same. But busy-ness is easy to fall into and productivity is hard work that requires clarity, focus and strategic thinking as part of a larger plan.

    The difference between something that’s important and something that’s urgent. Lots of things seem important in the moment, but in reality they’re urgent—which lends them an air of false importance. It was President Dwight D. Eisenhower—a master of time management—who pointed out that the most urgent decisions are rarely the most important ones. When you’re stressing over an issue or engaged in making long-term strategic plans, keep this distinction in mind.

    The difference between procrastination and focus. Procrastination is easy, while true motivation requires focus, hard work, and following through. As much as possible, avoid setting down something unfinished to work on something new.

    The difference between working hard and working smart. Hard work involves both physical and mental effort, while smart work is all mental and logical. Working hard keeps you on the path toward meeting  a goal, but working smart usually knows some good shortcuts.

    The difference between a bad and good habit. The first step in truly understanding this distinction is to identify your habit loops. Then you’re ready to evaluate them and, where you need to, make a change. Old habits, as they say, die hard. They may have already reprogrammed your brain. But you can  create new habits to replace the old ones that keep you from being effective or productive.

    The difference between when to say yes and when to say no. Knowing when and how to say no frees you to say yes only to proposals that meet your personal criteria and projects you’re genuinely excited about. The more you say no, the better you’ll be able to focus on your most important work.

    The difference between overwhelming and manageable projects. It’s as simple as breaking things down into smaller tasks. When you do, you’re forced to think through each step up front. Remember, small things done consistently create major impact.

    Once you really understand and absorb these principles, you’ll be prepared to handle any situation. And, as if that weren’t enough, you’ll be more relaxed and confident. You’ll get more done with less effort, more effectiveness and no down side.

    Lead from within: Productivity doesn’t happen on its own, it’s a task you must do every day to get the right work done effectively.

     


     

    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: Getty Images

    The post How to Effectively Get the Right Work Done appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:58 on 2018/07/05 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , Life Balance, , ,   

    How to Make Your Management Meetings More Productive  

    For anyone who works within an organization, meetings are a fact of life. And there are few things in corporate life worse than badly run meetings—the ones that don’t start on time and don’t stay on track but circle around and around in endless discussion with no direction, leaving everyone to wonder who’s in charge.

    It doesn’t have to be that way. A meeting that’s structured and run well can be an effective and even productive use of everyone’s time. As a leadership and executive coach, I’ve helped hundreds of chief executives learn how to run effective meetings.

    Based on that experience, here are the strategies that work best:

    Provide an agenda in advance. An effective meeting needs prep work, and that  means putting together an agenda. An agenda is a great tool for making sure your meetings stay on track and on time. It can help you set expectations up front, organize the subjects you want to cover into a workable structure, and avoid wasted time.

    Send the agenda and any important background material 24 hours in advance. Once you’ve prepared your agenda, send it to participants for input. There may be something important that another participant wants to talk about, or something you’ve forgotten to add—or there may be some points you’ve listed that are already resolved. By sending the agenda and other meeting materials in advance, you give people a chance to prepare and make the most of their time.

    Highlight important agenda items. Make a list of the highest-priority items, the ones that are the most important or urgent. Get through those before you tackle the lower-priority items so if something takes longer than planned you don’t have to let the meeting run late.

    Determine whether each agenda item requires a decision or is open only for discussion. Then include both lists as part of the agenda. If possible, assign and enforce time limits for all speakers on each agenda item.

    Prepare yourself. For every meeting on your calendar, schedule a 15-minute block of prep time. Use that time to think of ways you can add value to the meeting. Good preparation will allow you to lend your expertise to the meeting.

    Start on time. If you don’t start your meetings on time, chances are you won’t end on time. Then the next meeting starts late. Before you know it, the entire day is off schedule. This strict time rule needs to happen at every level of the organization, starting from the very top.

    Gather the right people. Give some thought to the list of people who should be there because of their expertise, their great ideas, or their need to know. At the same time, don’t waste the time of people who don’t have a reason to be there.

    Stay away from rabbit holes. Every meeting has a tendency to stray off topic. If the subject begins to wander, quickly move back to the agenda. Don’t be afraid to intervene and bring the conversation back to the topic.

    Have a parking lot. When a meeting goes off topic but the discussion is a good one to talk about, park the idea with a commitment to revisit it at a later meeting. Then make sure you really do revisit it.

    End on time.  If you’re good about setting an agenda with clear outcomes, you will know when a meeting needs to end. People have short attention spans. By keeping meetings short and timely, you have a better chance of holding their attention. Time is a precious resource, and no one wants their time wasted. Streamline meetings as much as possible.

    Summarize each agenda item when you’ve finished discussing it. At the close of the meeting, summarize the next steps that the group has decided to take. This will ensure that everyone is clear on the tasks that have been assigned to them and the actions they need to take next.

    Capture decisions and discuss next steps. You may have had a wildly productive meeting, but if the decisions weren’t captured, it could be as if it never happened. End every meeting with clear agreements and make notes on final decisions. Make sure you capture any immediate actions and assign them to the appropriate people. Send out your meeting notes promptly to everyone who attended to provide people with something to refer back to.

    When you know how to lead great meetings, your team will have less wasted time, less frustration, and more time and energy for everyone to do the work that matters most.

    Lead From Within: Meetings are good if they are productive, if they waste your time, get rid of them, because actions speak louder than words.


     

    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: Getty Images

    The post How to Make Your Management Meetings More Productive  appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:07 on 2018/07/03 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Energy, , , Life Balance, , , , , ,   

    How Successful Leader Manage Their Energy Not Their Time 

    Many of the leaders I work with are anxious to hear tips on time management. But after working with business leaders and executives for over three decades, I’ve come to realize that the most effective and successful leaders treat time management as a secondary concern. For them, it’s energy management that produces real results.

    Most of my clients—and most leaders in general—have a lot to accomplish. When it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day to do what you need to do, it’s all too easy to push yourself beyond your limits. As a result, you can become burned out long before you accomplish your goals.

    When I coach my clients on using their time effectively, the first step is to work on managing their energy. It can be challenging in our overscheduled and hurried world, but here are some of the fundamental principles:

    It’s about getting the rest you need. People try to get everything done in an all-nighter, but in fact the longer you stay up the less productive you become. It’s best to get a good night’s sleep and start fresh.

    It’s about quality, not quantity. I don’t know any business leaders who don’t have too much to do. It’s not about how much you can get done but how you get it done. Quality always wins out over quantity. It may even give you the zest to do more—it is a powerful feeling when you get things done with excellence.

    It’s about being present without being distracted. The best way to manage your energy and time is to be fully present with whatever, or whoever, needs your attention. When you have true focus, you can accomplish tasks twice as fast with more energy left over.

    It’s about taking small breaks. Multiple studies have found that you have more energy for the day’s tasks, especially work-related tasks, if you take short breaks throughout the day. Those can be as simple as five to 10 minutes of stepping away from your work space and getting into a different mental zone — for instance, taking a short walk, completing an unrelated task, listening to a favorite song or reading something else. Research suggests that distracting yourself briefly once an hour gives you more energy to work during the day productively.

    It’s about working out. You’ve likely heard it a thousand times already: exercise gives you endorphins, endorphins make you happy and being happy gives you energy. When you feel like you don’t have the energy to exercise and you drag yourself to the gym, you’ll leave feeling more energized. Numerous studies point to regular exercise as having a significant role in increasing energy levels and reducing fatigue.

    Lead from within: If you are truly mindful of your energy and you manage it well, you’re likely to become far more productive—and, as a result, a more effective leader.

     


     

    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: Getty Images

    The post How Successful Leader Manage Their Energy Not Their Time appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 19:17:24 on 2018/06/10 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , Life Balance, , ,   

    The 1 Thing You Need to Achieve Work-Life Balance 

    There is always lots of talk about work-life balance and how to achieve it, but the real truth falls outside most of those discussions.

    Jack Welch, renowned former CEO of General Electric, famously stated, “There is no such thing as work-life balance. There are work-life choices, and you make them, and they have consequences.”

    At the time his critics slammed him and accused him of being detached, but there was deep insight in what he was saying.

    As a leadership coach, I often hear from clients asking me about work-life balance and how to make it happen. But trying to create balance simply isn’t working.

    Technology means that we’re all available 24/7. And, because everyone demands instant gratification and instant connectivity, there are no boundaries, no breaks, no time for the balance we crave.

    But there’s an alternative to the nonstop work cycle. And isn’t found in balance but in integration.

    Balance is achieved when things become steady, and we know that life and business are anything but steady–they are in a constant state of motion.

    Everything we do, if we want to do it well, is done with an integration of parts that create synergy. So instead of work-life balance, let’s start working toward work-life integration.

    Work-life integration starts with analyzing the contradictions. Here are some examples to help you get started in making work-life integration work for you.

    1. We have to work, but we have also have to learn to take time off.

    A Harvard Business School survey of 1,000 professionals found that 94 percent worked 50 hours or more a week, and almost half worked in excess of 65 hours a week. Research shows that when we don’t feel in control of our time, illness and burnout can quickly follow. But we all juggle multiple responsibilities and roles in our lives. At work, you might be a boss, a colleague, and a mentor. At home, you might be a parent, a caregiver for an older family member, a sibling, a spouse or partner, and a friend. When you work hard at all those things you don’t have time to relax, but if you can slow down enough to start weaving them together, you can begin to integrate work and relaxation–achieving great things on both fronts.

    2. We have to be calculating, but we also have to be able to take risks.

    If you want to be good at business, at achieving your goals, you have to be calculating and shrewd at what you do. But you also have to be bold and take risks. This may make you uncomfortable, but if you want to succeed in business, as a leader, and as a human being, you need to integrate both concepts, however contradictory they may seem at first glance.

    3. We have to process, but we also have to produce.

    Everything now is all about being faster and quicker, which leaves very little room for processing. With everything on the fast track, it’s easy to miss out on giving yourself what you need. Success is a process, a quality of mind, and a way of being. When we learn to integrate process and product, we are able to function successfully as individuals and as teams.

    4. We have to do more, but we want to work less.

    The more efficient and productive you are at work, the easier it is for you to go home at a reasonable time. We can do more by being more productive and working less. If you can learn to integrate your skills, limit your distractions, and exercise your self-discipline, you’ll be ready to take action in no time. When you can focus on a task, you will be more productive over a shorter period of time than if you are frequently interrupted. Next, make sure that you’re working on valuable tasks that keep you focused without the long hours that lead to burnout. Give mind, body, and spirit nourishment, exercise, and rest throughout the day.

    Work-life balance may not work, but with some integration of what we want and what we need, we can find a combination that ends up working for us.

     


    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: Getty Images

    The post The 1 Thing You Need to Achieve Work-Life Balance appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:05 on 2018/06/09 Permalink
    Tags: , , Life Balance, , Weekend,   

    7 Things Wealthy People Do Every Weekend 

    Weekends are a squandered resource, too often spent either doing more work or in a passive cycle of sleep, food, drink, and pointless activity that’s easy on the brain. But a good weekend should refuel your spirit and rejuvenate you for whatever the week ahead will bring.

    Here’s what the super successful people do on their weekends that resets and refreshes them. Read through and see what you can start incorporating into your own weekend.

    1. Plan an agenda. Even for a weekend, it’s important to have a plan. You don’t need a micromanaged, minute-by-minute schedule, but you should have a loose agenda so you can make the most of your time and prioritize the things that mean the most to you.

    2. Make time for important relationships. Good time with those you love is always time well spent. Whether it’s children, a spouse or partner, parents, friends, or pets, use part of the weekend to reconnect.

    3. Move your body. Exercise doesn’t just strengthen and relax your body but builds your mind as well. Of course, it’s not effective to exercise only on the weekends, but it’s nice to schedule a good workout or two when you’re not crunched to get to work.

    4. Pursue your interests. Truly successful people are interesting people with interesting pursuits. They know that hobbies and other activities outside work are a potent force for happiness (and may lead to a great business idea).

    5. Go someplace special. Even the most high-pressured Type A’s like to get away once in a while. A mini vacation is a great way to leave behind all your responsibilities and get into something new.

    6. Unplug. Designate a period of time as a “screen Sabbath” and turn off all your screens–phone, laptop, tablet, TV. The distance creates space for other things that are important in life and will remind you that you control your screens, not the other way around.

    7. Connect with the arts. When was the last time you took in a concert, a play, a music festival, or a museum exhibition? The arts stimulate imagination and renew energy.

    8. Engage in meditation. Meditation can lower high blood pressure, decrease tension, and improve productivity, creativity, and well-being. Setting some time aside for meditation or prayer helps you be the best you can be for the week ahead.

    9. Don’t overschedule. Keep your commitments to a minimum, limit your chores, and banish busywork. You want to start your week rejuvenated, not exhausted.

    10. Pick up a book. Whether you want to acquire information or escape to a different world, spend some time with a book. Visit a bookstore or public library to stock up.

    11. Take a (short) nap. Many of us go into the weekend with a sleep deficit. Long periods of daytime sleep will leave you groggy, but a short afternoon nap is enjoyable, physically beneficial, and good for maintaining energy and attention.

    12. Learn something new. Learning not only gives you new knowledge but it can also improve your confidence. Find a subject you’re interested in, a skill you want to develop, or an area you want to explore more deeply. From there, you can sign up for a weekend class or online study, put together an informal study group, or make your own learning plan.

    13. Review, reflect, renew. Take time to walk through the highs and lows of the past week, and reflect on your goals and areas where you’d like to improve.

    14. Keep a journal. Journaling is therapeutic, helps disentangle thoughts, and gives you a written record of your life. Whether your journal is personal or professional, getting thoughts down on paper is a great practice.

    15. Pay it forward. Find ways to share your knowledge and blessings by serving as a volunteer, mentor, or coach.

    16. Plan again. Take a few moments to plan and prepare for the upcoming week so you can hit Monday ready to go.

    Of course, you can’t do all of these every weekend, but find a few items that stick with you and give them a try.

    Time is a precious resource, and you’re sure to benefit from making good investments with your weekend time.

     


    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: Getty Images

    The post 7 Things Wealthy People Do Every Weekend appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
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