Time Management Expert, Event Speaker: Mark Lamendola

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Time Tips: Kitting

In manufacturing, distributors of electrical supplies have a process they call "kitting." What they do is they put related items together into a kit, which then has its own part number. This saves time and money, because people don't keep ordering the same individual components. It's similar to "assembling"--a process in which components are put together as a larger assembly and sold that way. Think of "handcleaner and rags" vs. "chair and cushion."

What are some kits you can make, to save yourself time? I'll give you a list of some of my kits, and you can get ideas from those:

  • Map and magnifier. You can get a slim plastic magnifying sheet for about $1. Keep this with the street map you have in your car. Keep on in your "plane" luggage, also.
  • Pen and paper. Why keep these in different places, when you always use them together?
  • Toiletries kit. How can you possibly forget to pack a toothbrush? Have a complete toiletries kit devoted to travel. You can buy the toiletry bags just about anywhere, but get a good one from a luggage shop.
  • Electronics travel kit #1. I have a plastic bag in which I put a DC/AC converter (to power my laptop in a car), cell phone car charger (bought just for this kit--I leave another one in my car), and single-to-dual convenience receptacle expander. This goes in my regular luggage. When I pick up the rental car, out comes the plastic bag and I have mobile power.
  • Electronics travel kit #2. I carry a briefcase with an AC extension cord, wall charger for cell phone, brick and cords for laptop (bought just for this kit), and cable for using my cell phone as a 115k modem. When I travel, I never have to worry that I might have left a charging device at home--it's always in this kit.
  • Garden kit. Make up a box or tray of the same garden implements you always use. This way, you aren't running back and forth to get a tool you should have had with you. You could still store individual implements in a central tool chest or cabinet, but put make up a kit before tackling the work. Pruning shears, small saw, dandelion digger, spade--whatever.
  • Bathroom cleaning kit. Window cleaner, bowl cleaner, rags, small brushes--whatever you use to clean in your bathroom(s)--get all of this together, so you aren't making trips back and forth to get what you need.
  • Networking kit. If you go to business functions, bring your networking kit. What is this? A small notebook, pen, and business cards.
  • Shooting kit. Keep a bag with canvas safety glasses, ammo, hearing protection, etc., so this is all together. At 2AM when some coked out lunatic is breaking down your door, you don't want to be trying to find this stuff.

    Note: putting all of your firearms in a gun locker every night defeats the purpose of having firearms to begin with. But so does careless storage or use. If you have children, contact the NRA www.nra.org about the Eddie Eagle program--which teaches kids not to touch unattended firearms, but to tell an adult.
  • Climbing kit. This one is just an example--do a similar thing for the sport(s) of your choice. I keep a very nice bag just for climbing. In it, I keep chalk, shoes, harness, bandaids, and padlock. I know to "recharge" the kit before I go--with food bars (this sport burns calories like you wouldn't believe), gym shorts, and a tank top. If it's an outside climb, sunscreen goes in there also.

You can come up with other kits. As the climbing and gardening examples show, it's not necessary to always have every one of these kits made up. Sometimes, a list is just as good. Before you do X, check your list to make sure you have all the stuff you need.



Do you want to radically improve how well people in your organization make use of the limited number of hours in each work day?

Contact me to arrange a time when we can talk about a presentation: mark@mindconnection.com. Why arrange a time? So I can give you full attention during the call. There's a really powerful time management tip. Ask me why it works.