Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 134

must find their most productive times and exploit them.

When we hear the word "leader" paired with the word "exploit" we begin to worry.  Should leaders ever exploit anyone (or anything)?  The quick answer would certainly seem to be no.

However, leaders should always consider exploiting time, as there is never enough of it, and despite our best attempts, we can't seem to get around needing it to accomplish the things we need to accomplish. :)

But it isn't enough to make the most of time in a general sense.  We need to know enough about ourselves to find the times when we are most productive, and exploit those times like crazy.

For me, I tend to be most productive in the early morning hours.  This means doing whatever I can to get to the office around 7:30, and using the next hour and a half while the time is mostly mine to truly engage in deep thinking tasks.

It is also an opportunity where I can take five or ten minutes to just think.  Since there never seems to be much in the way of thinking time during the "normal" day, I enjoy having a few moments just to ponder, as I find it makes me more creative and critical as the day continues.

I'm at my least productive in the late afternoon, and I try to move many of the "lighter" tasks to that time period.

The challenge for us, organizationally, is we still design meetings around putting out fires and around what "worked" in the past.  Why do we still have faculty meetings in the afternoon?  Is that because the majority of staff members are most productive in the late afternoon?  Or is it simply for convenience?

We need to be asking our staff members when they are most productive, and then designing our most critical and challenging work around their responses.

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