I talk to a lot of leaders every single day, lots of retail leaders talking about the fact that they all have the same problem, TIME. And lack of time. It seems today, and especially in society today, that we all feel that we’re lacking time. But I’d like us to think about it a little bit differently. Are we lacking time or are we struggling to let go? Are we doing the wrong tasks?
I found myself the other day doing a task that was taking me quite a long time. And I was fiddling and trying to get it right and it just wasn’t working. I got to this point after I’d spent 10 or 15 minutes on it of a little bit of frustration. And then it hit me. Why am I doing this? I have people in my team and in my business that are so much better at this than me. This is a really easy pitfall we can fall into as a leader. “I just need it done now. I’ll just do it.”
When we do that, we’re actually not utilizing the strengths of our team. And we’re actually spending time on things that are less productive than what we could be doing. So, I have a little question that I ask myself every time I start, I get to that … Well, hopefully before I get to that point. I ask myself a question. Am I the right person to be doing this task? I ask myself that question a lot every single day. And this actually helps me work out whether it’s a high priority task for me or it’s a high priority task for one of my team members. And when I ask this really simple question, what also happens is I quickly pinpoint who is strongest at this in my team.
So, if it’s creating a beautiful design, I am not the strongest person in my team to do that. But I have amazing people around me that can do it. If it’s creating a window display, you may not be the strongest person to do that, but you may have someone who has absolute flair. So, it’s a really good way for us to actually recognize when am I holding on when I need to be letting go. Whenever we talk about not having enough time, what we’re actually talking about is holding on to low priority things or things that actually take us twice as long as someone else in our team.
So, as a leader, if we’re going to use our time really effectively, which we must, then we need to also be quite ruthless in what we actually spend our time on. Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, they don’t spend their time on serving the customers or on the cold face, on the things that they realize they have amazing people to do. They work out where their time is best spent. So, my question to you is are you doing tasks just to get them done and off the list that are actually for you as the Leader a low priority task? But are they a high priority for one of your team members?
It’s the great question. It’s a question I use every single day. Am I the right person to be doing this task? And if the answer isn’t a hell yes, then we need to look at how we quickly and efficiently delegate that. Just starting to ask this question alone will save you hours every single week. Because we will stop forcing ourselves to be doing the things that are not our high skill set, that are not our highest priority, and we will start focusing on the high priority things for us as leaders.
If you would like support to improve the effectiveness your team check out our 2Hr or Full Day Time Management Workshops where we help you and your team understand AND be able to get the most out of your time! Book your session here
Flying Colours Leadership, helping you successfully maximise you and your team’s time today, tomorrow and for the future.