I received more than one reply to last week’s blog post about:
IMPLEMENT ∫(STRATEGY) = RESULTS = GROWTH = IMPACT
All of you were on board with the Implementation is a Function of Strategy that yields Results, Growth, and Impact – which is great to hear.
But…you had, well, I’m going to call them “concerns.”
And one of the most pressing concerns you had was: Time to Implement.
There’s the rub.
We have NO TIME.
We are doing so much. And the work we are doing is important. Our teams and families need our time and attention. Our clients and customers deserve our focus and consideration.
So what happens?
The strategic plan, the one that will ensure our growth, gets put into a drawer for when the fires die down.
And when will that happen?
Most likely never.
There aren’t more hours in the day that will magically be delivered by the Department of Time Management.
Time just persists, and we act by progressing forward on the timeline.
How do we ensure that we have time?
Yet, time is crucial for the implementation of our strategic plan – so how do we ensure that we have it?
There are six things that are necessary for finding the time for implementation:
- Connect to the plan – You’ve heard the adage that “you find the time for the things that are important to you.” Essentially, it’s because you have a connection to those things. The same goes for your strategic plan. If you don’t feel connected to it, invested in it, or that it’s important to you and your business – you will not find the time. Make sure you have a plan that you feel connected to.
- Evaluate tasks based on whether completing them will move the plan forward – When it comes to the tasks on your list, you need to evaluate them. It’s not enough to check them off as complete – especially if they will not move you forward with your strategic plan. Make sure they are valuable to the end results you desire.
- Remove distractions – It is so easy to get distracted. (Purple squirrels abound!) But you need to remove yourself from the distractions when it comes time for implementation. This will allow you to have focused time and energy on what needs to be accomplished.
- Organize your tasks to improve efficiency – Efficiency is critical to giving you more time in your day – more time for implementation. Assess your SOPs and make sure they are working for you NOW. Things may have changed from when they were initially put in place, and there could be room for improvement.
- Manage yourself – You need energy to implement, but we often forgo our own well-being to complete tasks, creating a vicious cycle of decreased productivity and energy. Monitor yourself and your energy levels. When your energy reserves are low, it may be time to rest, relax, and replenish. When your energy levels are high, it’s time to take action and move forward.
- Gain fortitude by applying self control – Self control is something we all have the ability to use, but like everything else, it is a skill that needs to be practiced and applied. When you do exercise your self control – especially on those activities that are keeping you from reaching your goals- you will gain fortitude and power. David K Reynolds in his book Constructive Living says, “The mature human being goes about doing what needs to be done regardless of whether that person feels great or terrible. Knowing that you are the kind of person with that kind of self-control brings all the satisfaction and confidence you will ever need. Even on days when the satisfaction and confidence just aren’t there, you can get the job done anyway.”
With these six things in place, you will have the time you need for the implementation of your strategy.
Finally, if you want to see results, growth, and impact, spend some time each and every day connecting to your vision. Five minutes in the morning with a cup of tea. When you shower. After you drop the kids at school. Before you open your laptop for the day.
And then select the tasks that will actualize the vision because…
It’s not time management but decision and task management.
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