Updated: May 2, 2019
Over the course of past weeks, we’ve discussed keeping track of the tasks being accomplished on a daily basis. The purpose of these lists is to identify how the lists can be edited. Most of the tasks on the lists do need to be taken care of, maybe, and probably not by you.
... Well …
There are tasks that move us closer to our goals, tasks that keep us busy but not advancing toward our goals or worse, tasks that actually pull us further from our goals. Keeping track of the tasks we are completing on a daily basis allows us insight into whether we’re spinning our wheels, moving backward, or moving forward. If we are constantly, consistently, and persistently moving forward, toward our goals then we are growing.
Sometimes that growth may seem subtle. It may feel as though enough isn’t being accomplished; in terms of the larger goal or set of goals. That feeling is a distraction. That distraction has the real and tangible ability to turn our focus to other tasks that, on the one hand help us feel as though we’ve made meaningful headway but on the other hand yield very low or non-existent return on invested time, energy, or capital.
This concept is applicable to anyone in any organization. We are all masters of ourselves and in constant pursuit of individual growth. Stay tuned, my book dives into that more, but, one of the differences among us is the direct effect we have on other’s lives or experiences.
Where do I start though? How do I edit my lists?
Simply put …
As leaders, the focus should be emphasized on other people, more specifically, the people hired into the company.
That said, regardless of what the goal is; “I want to increase sales conversion over the next 30, 60, and 90 days.”, “I want to create a social media marketing plan in 10 days.”, or “I want to decrease the number of safety violations immediately.”; the things on a list of tasks being accomplished by a leader should prioritize other people first.
If the priority is hiring the right people, giving those people the right things to do, providing those people opportunities for personal development, and allowing those people to grow into leaders within the organization then as leaders, the assurance is apparent; the return on invested time, energy, and capital will yield higher productivity, more of the right things being accomplished, higher quality engagement, and higher profits.
Some of you may wonder why the client wasn’t mentioned as being the top priority.
That’s because the client is understood.
Three groups of people exist as focal points in any industry and at any level of said industry; The person in the mirror (You), the people your product or service is intended to help (Clients/Customers), and the people serving the role of employee or employer (All of us). The most sustainably successful companies have been and will continue to be those in which the leaders recognize, understand, and truly value the need to focus on personal development (You), how the refined person in the mirror is able to provide a product or service that will help others (Customers), and above all, that product or service is in such high demand where you are now able to provide a secure means for people in your community (Us) to live full lives.
All of this is an extension of you. The whole thing becomes much larger than you the very moment you make the brave decision to provide something to someone else.
Whatever product or service is being provided, it should absolutely be created, delivered, executed, or implemented with the single goal of making another person’s life experience higher quality. That is a very tall order and is something that many single member businesses spend loads of time perfecting. Things change when the first employee is hired. Our focus should also change, knowing that those employed understand the expectation toward the client the same as or better than the leader. It’s easy to find someone smarter, faster, and overall better at any given task. However, keeping that person around is not as easy. If the focus doesn’t shift their way, in terms of providing a purposeful mission, personal development, an ethically sound collaboration environment, along with an opportunity for career advancement then that person or group of people who are smarter than us, faster than us, and better than us at something or multiple things may choose to help elsewhere.
My challenge for you ...
... Take your lists and begin assessing which tasks are focused on your direct impact in someone else’s experience. Then, simply remove or delegate the tasks that take your time away from your ability to effectively improve those around you.
This can be more difficult than one might think. I know from lots of experience. Don’t hesitate to schedule an initial meeting with me. That’s our opportunity to get to know each other and take a look at your lists, goals, struggles, or anything else that comes to mind. I’m happy to help navigate any questions you might have regarding your own, stuff.