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Managing Our Time


We cant manage time. We can only manage what we do with our time. We have to recognize the time thieves that cost us money. Things like personal phone calls, reading and returning emails that have nothing to do with our business, and surfing the Web, just to name a few.

We have to implement a time management plan that increases our productivity, reduces our stress, and manages our tasks and our appointments. The key is having things always at your fingertips. This includes a view of the current month, the upcoming month, and always the next 12 months, appointments from 7 a.m. through evening, and a space for tasks that must be accomplished today. Also, I like to carry a written or electronic page for every person with whom I have regular communication. This could be a boss, sellers, clients, dept. heads, etc. Whenever we have a discussion, I log a few notes on their sheet.

Set designated times and time limits for returning emails and phone calls. Build a neat, clean file for everything important. I carry the following files most all the time: TODAY, CURRENT, COMPLETE (to file), READING, and EXPENSES. Always carry your agenda with you, even on weekends. Today, most of us use our phone, but make certain your agenda is safely synced up and duplicated elsewhere. Each evening examine the next day. Are all appointments logged? Are your tasks for tomorrow listed in order of priority, As and Bs?

Say NO to non-essential tasks. Think before you say Yes. Take the time to do things right the first time. Errors result in wasted time. Doing the right thing is effective. Doing things right is efficient. Time-activate everything. Give everything an appointed block of time on your agenda whether its a person or a task. Among your most important appointments every day are the ones you make with yourself to accomplish what must be done. Update your tasks throughout the day. Priorities can change. Be flexible. Even the greatest time managers only commit about 50 percent of their calendar on any given day.

Now, youre prepared for emergencies or sudden assignments. Know when you are most effective, mornings or afternoons, and plan accordingly. Eliminate trivial tasks that have no long-term benefit. Delegate or eliminate tasks when possible. Avoid being a perfectionist. Some things need to be closer to perfect than others. Keep your workspace neat. Time management experts have virtually nothing on their desk except what theyre currently working on. Only touch a piece of paper once. Everything should be in one of these three places: HOLD, DO TODAY, or TRASH. Clean your computer. Build archive folders. The only thing in your in-box should be what has come in within the last two hours. No one should have hundreds of saved emails in their in-box. If they arent worth archiving, permanently delete them. Keep the previous 30 days of deletes. When it comes to daily tasks, work only on the As. Bs can move to the next day. Allow yourself some down time each day. Allow yourself time for exercise. Dont take 10 vacation days in a row. Under commit and youll over deliver.

Rob Adair is the President of Pinnacle Solving. His company provides revenue growth solutions, branding and differentiation strategies to radio and other industries. Adair is a former radio industry COO and Sr. VP overseeing 25+ stations and multiple major markets. He can be reached at 405-641-0458 or by e-mail

(6/14/2013 1:58:35 AM)
Yeah, and you want to have 4-5 sales meetings a week. Talk about a waste of time. "Hey... I've got an idea... Lets have the sales staff do assignments and teach the other sellers..." I've never read something so idiotic.


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