Recently, I have been revisiting where my time is actually going. Everyone should do this periodically.
It is especially important for entrepreneurs, business owners and self-employed people.
I did a detailed review of where I actually spent my time over the last 12 months with additional focus on where it was trending.
Not surprising that the trend was drifting from where I wanted to be.
Common wisdom is that you should do the work that adds the most value to the organization.
This time around I also considered what I should be doing at a deeper level.
What work gives me energy? What drains it?
I took the Kolbe A assessment and reviewed the results and interpretation with my coach. The Kolbe A is interesting in that it tells you how you will naturally work when you are striving; given the opportunity to do work your natural way.
I also decided that I was not going to make incremental changes. In order for me to be inspired to change it had to be a dramatic goal… one worthy and inspiring enough to capture my attention.
Start with the End in Mind
Where I spend the majority of my time and effort at our company has to meet four criteria:
- It has to be high impact and value;
- It has to give me energy or conserve my expenditure of energy (match my natural way of working); and
- It has to "Start with Why". Purpose and passion are key for getting through the work that does not meet number 2;
- It has to lead to making the business stronger; able to run without me (or any other key person) whether or not I want to work in it.
The last one is important. Many business owners focus primarily on doing work that is satisfying only to find out they are critical in too much of the work that goes on. If you don't want to do this one you need to partner with someone who will.
Let's be realistic. Not everything that I need to get done will meet these criteria.
As long as the majority of energy and effort I am expending meet this criteria, I will be meeting my goal.
And just knowing that my target is a big, high impact improvement will help motivate me to make it happen. I also plan to review where my time and energy go more frequently in the future… I will need to shake things up to keep motivated. These are both part of my natural makeup, yours may differ.
Now that I understand myself a little better it makes sense.
Take time to reflect and adjust your course periodically. You owe it to yourself and your business.
How often do you review where your time and energy is going? What is your natural balance?