One of the most critical Success Principles is using your time wisely. While squandered money can sometimes be replaced, wasted time is gone forever.
The pace at which the world is moving seems to be increasing exponentially. We now have the tools to monitor a universe of information continuously: companies buying and selling; changes of ownership; economic ups and downs; the war on terrorism; the war for talent; the war on drugs; natural disasters; racial tension; campus massacres; and at home my kids growing by inches every time I turn around. Things are different now, and downtime is diminishing.
So, how do you muster enough power to accomplish everything you need to get done in a frenetic world where information overload is the norm, and stay committed to being the best you can be at work and home?
My personal breakthrough in time management has to do with gaining mastery on three levels: leveraging my power, choosing my opportunities wisely, and becoming a power user in Outlook. Each level took me time to grasp, master, and implement. The breakthrough into power, freedom, and peace of mind I experienced came from a course I attended years ago (when I was a Landmark Seminar Leader) called Mission Control. That course certainly had an impact on me; it showed me that I was spending a considerable amount of time doing things that did not “light me up,” that I was not particularly adept at, or that were simply distractions on the path to achieving my goals.
That course made me realize there were many things I needed to delegate, outsource, or simply stop doing. Over time, I built a business in which anything that I was not any good at, did not have value to me personally, or did not bring forth new opportunities for Alliance, was delegated. Using the power of talented people and resources has enabled me to essentially clone myself 25 times – through the use of full-time, part-time, and “virtual” employees, or off-site consultancy capacities. Now I have much more time to watch my sons’ basketball games and to be a part of their lives, and all because I do not try to do everything myself. This is a continual learning process because discovery takes place each time I ask, “Is this the best use of my time, and if not, who can I find to take care of this and how can I structure it so it works for everyone?”
The second level to gain mastery of was attracting and choosing my customers and business opportunities wisely. Who are the people you find pleasurable to work with? Who are the people who respect and appreciate my 22 years in the recruiting and selection industry as a top performer ranked for quality and integrity? Who will pay me to save their time? Who has a compelling mission that people can wrap their hands around and to which they want to contribute? Who offers a well-managed work environment that fosters excellence in employee performance as well as in development?
The more specific I am on what type of customers and opportunities I want to represent, the easier it is to spend my time on things that have a payoff or make a difference, and that use my best skills and talents. When I compromise any of the above for the sake of “getting a deal,” I always wind up spinning my wheels, becoming frustrated and exhausted. The technique of choosing your clients wisely can also be applied to attracting and choosing your perfect mate and/or employee and is based on a process called the “law of attraction,” a process detailed in the book Attracting Perfect Customers (Stacey Hall and Jan Brogniez).
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The last level that I needed to become powerful with was using a tool like Microsoft Outlook to foster mastery in productivity and eliminate time bandits. I learned about every function that Outlook offers and how to use those elements of the software to impact the way I spend my time as well as to create efficiencies in my workday.
The message is clear: time – there is a limit on it; we have only so much of it; and as the song says, “You only got 100 years to live.”
Best in Success.
Margaret Graziano, CPC, CTS, and mother of three, has been a top producer in the staffing and recruiting industry for the past 20 years and has owned her own firm since 1991. She prides herself on client retention, and making the right hires. She has earned over $5 million in personal “desk production” income and has placed over 2,000 candidates in direct-hire positions. With the competitive business world and the war on talent in full force, Margaret’s company, Alliance HR Network, has ventured into new realms of talent acquisition, organizational development, and human capital consulting services, thus diversifying Alliance’s revenue streams and gaining new and exciting talent acquisition and assessment consulting opportunities. Margaret’s email is email@example.com, and her phone number is (847) 690-0077. The strategic planning forms are listed under a Strategic Planning Downloads section at http://www.alliancehrnetwork.com/employers/industry_training.asp.