I really do love the subject of time management, mainly because I have learned, the hard way, to manage mine effectively. I used to get up in the morning and rush getting ready, rush breakfast and rush getting to work. When I working in the corporate world I used to book clients back to back and rush my paper work. I used to miss things, make mistakes, and the great work I did with clients was not at all reflected well on paper. I wasn’t managing my time, or anything else, effectively.
Things were not much better when I became a mum. When my son was small I took him to the childminder at 8.30 on the dot then drive like Lewis Hamilton to get to work on time, with not even a minute to spare. And, yes, I got traffic tickets. In my last job I found that working well over my hours when I didn’t need to and was getting stressed out, ulcers, so I stopped… Just stopped!!!
I sat down and thought “I am leading others here and I need to be a better example to them.” So me and my diary looked at each other and the diary said “Just look at me! Now get your pen and put the hours down that you are supposed to do and make sure you stick to your hours.” And I did. It was the best thing I did because I did become pretty stressed out. So here is what else I did and you can do too:
- Befriend your diary – If you have a hard copy use it and put in your hours on each day of the week that you you work and stick to it. If you have an online or phone diary be sure to synchronise them.
- Give yourself some space – If you, like I used to, have a job where you regularly meet clients, give yourself space between each meeting so that you can gather your thoughts or write notes. Just 5 minutes will make a massive difference and it is nice for each of your clients to see you at your best and for you to feel good too.
- Delegate tasks you don’t have time to do – If you are the leader of people you are not expected to do or know everything. That’s why we have teams. How do you think Richard Branson was able to build the Virgin empire? He has a team of people around him who know a thing or two about trains, planes and intergalactic travel. Use the expertise around you and in your team to carry out specific tasks. If there is a meeting that needs to be attended by someone in your team or organisation it doesn’t have to be you all the time. You can choose someone to represent you but make sure they know what the meeting is about and the contribution your team/organisation will make.
- Own your time – Time is something that we are all in control of. There are 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week, 12 months in a year and at least 365 days in a year. What you don’t finish today can be finished tomorrow or another day. Leave yourself enough time to travel, have lunch (at least 30 minutes), have breakfast, stroll, or write up notes. Space things out if you have to because when you are in a leadership role you do need time to think. Clear some space in your diary to do admin or just to think. I’ve had days in my diary where I’m delivering sessions, developing my own professional practice and, thinking time. It really does lower your stress!
- You are not an island – Leadership can feel lonely sometimes, which is why it is important to have a peer group or a buddy who you can lean on for support, whether it is to have a rant or to celebrate something good!
If you are a current or aspiring female leader who wants to be as effective as you can be in what you do, and gain influence within your work or business arena, come and join me in a free webinar on Wednesday, December 14 at 8pm (GMT). I will share with you how raising your Emotional Intelligence (EQ) can make you become a more effective leader and the difference it can make to your leadership success.
You can register for the webinar on Wednesday, December 14th at 8pm (GMT) here
If you can’t make the webinar register anyway and you will get the replay.
Hope to see you there!
p.s. Participants will benefit if they have never had any form of management training before. Regardless all attendees of this webinar will gain a deeper understanding of the link between EQ and leadership.