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Failure to execute

We tend to confuse activity with accomplishment: we attend endless meetings and make plans, but at the end of the day, no one does the job and gets the results required.

“Failure to execute” is among the biggest problems in organizations today.

@xan_a211

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Time is our precious resource. It is perishable, it is irreplaceable, and it cannot be saved. It can only be reallocated from activities of lower value to activities of higher value.

Time management refers to how you schedule and organize your time for different activities.

Your “frog” is your most important task, the one you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don’t do something about it.

If you have two important tasks, start your day with the biggest, hardest, and most important task first. Focus on completing it before you go to the next one.

  • Develop a sense of urgency: the habit of moving fast when an opportunity presents itself to you.
  • Stop procrastinating: develop the time management habit of moving quickly when something needs to be done.
  • Work in real-time: do your work as soon as it comes up.
  • Think on paper: Always write down what you intend to do.
  • Avoid distractions: They make getting off track entirely too easy.
  • Make your list of written tasks the night before: The better plan you have, the easier it is for you to get started.
  • Make a to-do list for every day: One of the best time management tools you can develop.
  • Make your to-do lists a habit: When something new comes up, add it to the list.
  • Check off your completed tasks: This activity gives you a sense of accomplishment and generates the motivation to keep going.
  • Answer all of your emails at the same time
  • Keep your emails short and sweet
  • Create email folders
  • Check your email twice a day.
  • Not allowing enough time to complete your task: Add sufficient cushion time to complete every step of the project. 
  • Assuming that everything will work out all right: Assume that you are going to have problems and schedule sufficient time and resources to solve those problems.
  • Rushing at the end: You almost invariably will make mistakes and do poor quality work that you'll have to go back and correct later. 
  • Trying to do several things at once: You end up doing nothing well. 
  • "A” items are most important: the things that you must do.
  • "B” items only have minor consequences: tasks that you should do, but they only have mild consequences.
  • “C” tasks have no consequences: they have no effect at all on your work life.
  • “D” for delegate: the things that you can delegate to someone else.
  • “E” for eliminate: the things you should eliminate altogether.

For you to develop sufficient desire to develop time management and organizational skills, you must be intensely motivated by the benefits you feel you will enjoy. 

You must want the results badly enough to overcome the natural inertia that keeps you doing things the same old way.

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RELATED IDEAS

  • Integrate apps and automate your routines with online calendars, scheduling apps, time trackers, project management systems and other tools.
  • Delegate some tasks to focus on more important tasks and teach your team members new skills. Next time you feel overloaded, you’ll have a trained employee who can back you up.
  • Outsource tasks that take too much of your time and put your focus where it's needed most.  

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IDEAS

The Aquarian

You have a borderline avoidant approach to work and your high sociability gets in the way of task management and productivity.

Solution: find ways to motivate yourself, avoid procrastination and don’t forget why you are working at something. 

Do

Simply put, act on your tasks. The 2-minute rule can help with that:  If you can complete a task in two minutes or less, do it now.

It's amazing what you can accomplish in just 120 seconds: write an email, make a quick phone call, pull a report and so on.