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Time Management for Leaders: 12 Habits of Productive People

Time Management for Leaders

We all wish that we could waste less time and accomplish more with the time we are given. Even focused-minded professionals find themselves sidetracked with time-wasting activities. As a business owner and leader within your company, time management is of the utmost importance.

12 Habits of Productive People 

Here are 12 habits that can enhance your productivity as well as the productivity of the people around you.

1. Free yourself from your email! 

Take a cue from comedian, actor, and author Aziz Ansari, “...if you focus on the work you’re doing instead of focusing on [email] for like two minutes and then getting distracted to answer some question that isn’t pressing at all, you do a worse job.”

Ansari found that he was able to focus more efficiently on the task at hand by redirecting other tasks such as important email inquiries to his assistant who provided him with any pertinent information at the end of the day.

2. OHIO System

If you do not have the option of eliminating email from your daily operations, try using an OHIO system, or “only handle it once”. Respond to an email as soon as you see it and then move to another task. 

3. Establish a System for Success

Establish a system for responding to emails, phone calls, or other routine tasks. Maybe you ask an assistant to handle your email inbox or maybe you schedule an hour each day to respond to the emails in your inbox. Whatever system you choose, stick to the system to prevent you from distraction in the middle of your tasks.

4. Selective Perfectionism

You did not become a leader in your business accidentally. You’re at the top of your field because you are great at what you do. A part of that likely comes from perfectionism in your industry. While perfectionism is important in many areas it is not usually necessary when it comes to lengthy reports or mundane tasks. Choose the areas in which you will strive for perfection. 

5. Being Productive > Thinking About Productivity

The most productive professionals are not productive because they are constantly writing down and checking off each task. Rather, they have established productivity as second nature. Don’t let your methods for productivity overshadow the work that must be done.

6. Be Conscientious

Conscientious individuals are organized, disciplines, and achievement-oriented. If you’re writing a proposal letter, for example, write your first draft and then move on to another task. The following day, return to the proposal letter to refine the content and focus on the details. Conscientious people strive to produce great products but do not waste time agonizing over every detail.

7. It’s All About the Work Done

Productivity is not a race amongst individuals. What may take someone one full day may take others only a few hours. Focusing on how many hours you spend on a task is too often a step in the wrong direction. 

The goal of a productive leader should be to inspire others to be passionate about their jobs. Neither the leader nor the employees can accomplish their projects with excellence if productivity is defined by the time on the clock.

8. Shared Accountability

Enact self-imposed accountability by telling others about your goals. This will help you to stay on task throughout the day, knowing that you will have to answer for the way you spent your time.

9. Plan Out All Scenarios

Before you begin the workday or a particularly difficult task, anticipate any possible distractions. Have methods in place to prevent these distractions from affecting your productivity.

10. Change Anxiety Into Excitement

Performance anxiety is debilitating. By changing that anxiety into excitement, you can reduce the nervous feelings surrounding a task. This will allow you to amp up your resolve and work with greater productivity.

11. Pump Yourself Up

Ask yourself how you can do the next task on your to-do list. Get excited about your achievements and the increase in your daily productivity.

12. Order Matters

Do you have a to-do list? Productive leaders know that not all items are weighted the same. Start your day with an easy task to give yourself a feeling of momentum. After accomplishing the first task, move onto a tougher task that must be accomplished.

 

LUXA Enterprises specializes in HR outsourcing and HR solutions. We have a passion for employee relations and want to help small and mid-size companies increase productivity at work. Find out why people choose to work with us!

Topics: Advice Business Advice Leadership