Time Management Expert, Event Speaker: Mark Lamendola

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Time Tips: Search and Destroy Unneeded Tasks

Just as many people acquire detritus--once useful things that now simply take up space-- in their closets, so many people continue to possess habits and rituals that no longer serve a useful purpose and now simply take up space in their schedules. And, likewise, many of us perform tasks that simply aren't needed. We could use the time thus consumed for other things.

How can you identify these parasitic vestiges of times past? One way is to keep a four-hour diary. Just pick a four-hour chunk of your day--for example, decide that you will track 0600 to 1000 next Wednesday. Carry a little pocket notebook and pen everywhere you go for that four hour period. Then, simply jot down the name of each task you do and how long it took you. The next day, look through the list. You may be amazed at how much time you could free up by making a few small adjustments. Here are some ideas:

  • Simply eliminate some tasks outright. For example, reading the newspaper is pointless (in my opinion, since they rarely get their facts right).
  • Scaling back some tasks. For example, that morning meeting that takes an hour can be reduced to 15 minutes if the meeting has an advance agenda, a purpose, and resultant assignments. Meeting reform can save huge amounts of time. Scale back and save! 
  • Adjusting some  tasks. For example, do you make your lunch each AM? Consider making batches weekly and refrigerating and freezing them. This gives you economies of scale.
  • Redesigning some tasks. For example, do you stop at the convenience store for coffee on your way to work? Save time by brewing your own while you're getting dressed.

You can think through most tasks in this manner to free up time in small chunks that add up. Work this four hour period thoroughly for a month, then pick a new four hour period to optimize. 



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.