We would all like to accomplish more productive and effective. Our sense is that being more productive equates with an increased sense of competence and confidence, as well as having additional time to do more things that we truly enjoy. In our quest for increased productivity, we typically start with making improvements to our time management skills. While time management is an important component of increased productivity, it is only one component that fits into a broader self-management strategy.
Readers of this space may question if the previous two messages asserting that reading more and sleeping more actually leads to increased productivity. My short answer is, “Yes, unequivocally.”
The longer answer is that all of these things (reading, sleeping, time management) are components of a broader self-management strategy that leads to better performance in your role as a Chamber executive.
In terms of productivity, there are a couple of important distinctions between time management and self-management that apply to Chamber execs. For starters, it’s fair to say that most Chamber execs not only want to be more productive, they also want to be more effective. Emphasizing self-management will have far greater impact on your effectiveness than time management. Because time is a finite resource, we tend to think of it in terms of budgeting the correct amount for each task or meeting while maintaining a never-ending to do list.
That’s why it’s important, as Cal Newport argues in Deep Work, that we do not “use busyness as a proxy for productivity”. Yes, we’re busy but are we working on meaningful things? Seriously, how much of each day is devoted to Executive Level stuff that is truly meaningful to the growth and direction of your organization? How much time did we build into our day to think deeply about the growth and direction of our organizations?
Self-management connotes that we determine the direct ourselves instead of time determining the agenda for us. As chief executives, we need to build thinking about the growth and direction of our respective organizations into every day rather than filling up every minute of the day with tasks, meetings, and trying to catch up.
Matt Appenzeller - SOCA