Can you imagine building a home without a set of blueprints? Sure, you’d get something done, but it wouldn’t be well planned. You would probably get some walls constructed and would put a roof on it. You would get some sort of house, but it might not look anything like what you really wanted.
Building a home without a blueprint is a great metaphor for managing your time. Without a well thought out plan for your time, you will get some things done, but you might not get exactly what you wanted.
So, how can we plan our week to accomplish what we want and need to accomplish. How can we manage our time to achieve its best use? How can we get things done so that we and our boss are happy with the results?
Ask 5 quick questions:
- What are your goals for the week (what is important)? 4 minutes
- What opportunities are available to achieve those goals (are these goals even achievable this week)? 3 minutes
- What actions will you need to take to achieve these goals? 6 minutes
- What amount of time will you need to get these things done? 4 minutes
- Does your day planner schedule have enough room in it? 3 minutes
Does this work? You bet! I use this little system often and when I do, it makes for a week full of achievement and accomplishment. If I get too “busy” to plan my week, when Friday rolls around I usually wonder what I accomplished that week … and I usually can’t remember!
Caution: don’t overload your schedule. Make certain to leave some time for unexpected events and “emergency meetings.”
Don’t deviate from the time constraints
Usually your best answers to the 5 questions are the ones that first pop into your head. Go with your first hunch but don’t be concerned if you have to re-boot and start over by Wednesday. You probably got through your list! If that’s the case, start a new list.