Managing Summer Time

Summer is a season of vacations, beaches, time with family and other distractions. However, you’ve still got business to manage and clients to satisfy. Perhaps more than any other time of the year, summer presents time management challenges for you and your team. It’s up to you to make sure work gets done. Here are some time management tips to help.

Prioritize Your Time

As an executive/leader of an organization, you have an obligation to manage your time like a Swiss watchmaker manages a timepiece. There are anywhere from five to twenty jobs a leader has on any given day. The question for all of us is what time do we devote to each and why?

Key tip: Do not over-commit yourself.

Delegating Saves Time

Often in my one-on-one sessions, a client and I examine where his/her time is spent, the energy each job requires and the impact of that energy. It’s quite interesting what we discover. We find that many of these jobs are actually tasks that can be given to other Directs if that Direct is taught what to accomplish and acknowledged for accomplishing it.

Key tip: You cannot do it all, nor should you try.

Match the Right People with the Right Projects

The challenge is pinpointing the right tasks to assign to the right team of people every day. You can get your team to take responsibility for their tasks. They are more likely to do that if they are given tasks that match their skill set. That’s your job. Ultimately, matching them with the right projects benefits them because they find their work satisfying. For you, it pays because tasks get accomplished by Directs in which you have the confidence that they will do the work well.

What doesn’t work is taking on projects you know others should be responsible for because you want each to turn out right. What that creates is overburden on your part and a ceiling-of-growth on your Direct’s part. It creates the situation where you feel like you have no time to advance…because you don’t.

Key tip: Maximize your personnel by giving them work they can do the most efficiently.

Prioritize by Following the Money

The casual nature of summer can create an atmosphere where people work on what is easy, not what brings in money. Prioritize your team’s tasks lists by determining if their success with each item will impact the bottom line. Examine which are the most commercially important to your business and would be the most self-actualizing in the process. Have them focus on those items first…the other stuff can wait!

Key Tip: Focus your team on the profitable tasks first.

Create Incentive

Once you have prioritized the work on which your team should be focused, give them a little extra incentive since summer will be pulling at them to want to be elsewhere. Create some programs that reward success. Have a team goal that results in some extra time off or a financial reward. The point is that you are acknowledging that summer presents different challenges than the rest of the year and you are doing something to keep things moving in the right direction.

Key tip: Rewards, even small but frequent, can motivate people to stay focused.

With all of this, I wish for you a fantastic, and profitable, summer!  – SG