Posts Tagged "time management"

Yes….You Are Working Hard

Posted by on Nov 27, 2017 in Productivity | 0 comments

Yes….You Are Working Hard

More than any other topic I have trained on, I think that I get the most resistance to Time Management training.

I think I understand some of the reasons why. People are working really hard and yet, find themselves exhausted and too-often, frustrated.

It’s hard to experience those things and simultaneously invite the idea that perhaps your own practices are contributing to it. That’s a lot to swallow.

Even if you are meeting all your commitments (but I know many are not), is it your best work, are you delivering on time, or do you have time for activities important to you?

Consider a blame-free investment in yourself. You’d sharpen your saw if you had a big job in front of you, knowing that to skip that step will ultimately cost you much more time. You’d use an electric screwdriver to place screws if you wanted a job to go more quickly and smoothly. Once you learn the nuances of using the tool, you proceed with ease.

The same is true for time management – tools learned and applied can make a big difference.

You ARE working hard. No one can take that away from you. Now, consider sharpening your tools and experience less of the frustration and more of the wins.


Invest in yourself:

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Delegation: Get Clear First

Posted by on Nov 29, 2016 in Productivity | 0 comments

Delegation: Get Clear First

“It’s not in my job description” is a common complaint that may gain credibility due to poor delegation practices. There are good reasons to delegate that often benefit the employee and the organization. When delegation is done well, you should see growth in employees, a focus on priority work, and high quality results. If that’s not your experience today, check out my new resource The Why and How of Delegation.

I’d love to hear your stories of things gone wrong and great results. And if you try out the suggestions, let me know how it goes!


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Be Less Perfect!

Posted by on Feb 3, 2016 in Productivity | 0 comments

Be Less Perfect!

How long did it take you to do more than what was really needed?
How many times did you do that this week?
What didn’t get done or did you not get to do this week because there wasn’t enough time?

I believe in quality always and going the extra step when the people deserve it or the context prompts it.

But, I see so many people stressed related to the work in front of them. And not all work is created equal. Not all work requires, demands, nor should be given the gold standard. It simply means you can’t do as much work – or attend to non-work, like family, health, growth, and recreation.

Consider this when faced with a work task, or any task you take on:
1) Is THIS task really a priority?
2) Who is the “customer” of this task and what is his or her expectation?
3) Will “extras” beyond the expectation be noticed and valued?
4) What is the cost of spending more time on this to exceed expectations?

Do well, and meet expectations. Save the “Red Curtains” for when it makes a true difference.

Back to work for me!

Mary Beth


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Many Ways to be Successful

Posted by on Jan 2, 2016 in Productivity | 2 comments

Many Ways to be Successful

My sister, Ann Marie, and I both have a history of being successful in the work that we do. And we do it so differently!

Some examples of how the world shows up differently for us:

  • Ann Marie was writing in a very cool journal that allows for a short response to the same question over five years. She received it for Christmas in 2014 and began writing in it on December 26th. That freaked me out! There is no way I would have done that – I would have waited until January 1st. She got me one for my birthday which is January 18th. She was smart enough to give it to me on December 30th so that I could start at the beginning of the year!
  • My spices are alphabetized. How else are you supposed to find them? My sister’s spices are categorized by how she uses them.
  • If something unexpected comes up, I will sometimes write it on my to-do list after I have done it just so I can mark it complete. I use lists all the time. My sister doesn’t. Somehow she still manages to get the right things done. I don’t understand.

Are you more like me or more like Ann Marie?

The danger in acknowledging Ann Marie’s success is that she doesn’t typically follow the “standard” principles of time management and prioritization. But, remember that I started out by sharing that she is very successful. She has found her own methodologies that work, but many people who don’t use the standard principles struggle with their productivity but will use the “but that’s not me” reason for not giving them a try.

If 2016 has much to offer and you want to make sure that you benefit, consider one or more of these ideas. But the point is, do something to move yourself down the path:

  • Play with both a pen and paper way of being organized and an electronic version. I am very comfortable and proficient with computers and my phone, but I still strongly prefer paper and pencil for managing my day and priorities. What works better for you?
  • Do you know what you want out of the year? I wrote down twelve goals on a whiteboard in my office that will stare me down through the whole year. That motivates me. If you are creative and artistic, take some time to make your list attractive. Make it your wallpaper on your computer if that’s where you spend your time. But, knowing what you want is a big part of getting there! The goals don’t have to be huge. One of my goals is to clean my basement. Another is to enroll 50 subscribers to my blog. (Consider helping me out with that one!)
  • Consider having different methodologies for work and home. I use the same planner for both because I work at home and my day is so fluid. But, if you want some better separation of work and home, make a home version fun and homey and separate from work tasks.
  • Read something about organization, prioritization, goal setting – there are so many good resources available on LinkedIn or just Google it. Choose just ONE thing to try. You don’t have to do it forever – but give it three weeks. That’s how long it takes to form a habit.
  • It’s legitimate to have a task of cleaning your work space…the first three things I did in 2016 (the first three prioritized items on my to-do list!) were 1) my 2016 calendar and January planning; 2) Update my White Board with my monthly projects, projections, and 2016 focus; 3) Clean and organize my office. That took some time. And when I was done I managed to complete 7 other tasks (several of them significant) partly because I felt good about where I was organizationally.
  • Know what success looks like to you. My success is often defined by my client’s success. My sister’s looks different. You may connect success strongly to your career. Others may define success more on community impact, happiness of your family, or living a healthy lifestyle. Regardless, what are you intentionally doing to move towards or maintain that success?

Whether you are Mary Beth or Ann Marie or somewhere in between (we have a sibling after all!), it is important to combine your natural tendencies with good practices to ensure a successful venture into the new year!

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Wishing you a healthy, happy, and successful 2016.


Mary Beth

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