Sharing my learnings from the book, Do What Matters Most by Rob & Steve Shallenberger
Do What Matters Most by Rob & Steve Shallenberger
In researching more than 1,260 managers and executives from more than 108 different organizations, Steve and Rob Shallenberger discovered that 68 percent of them feel like their number one challenge is time management, yet 80 percent don’t have a clear process for how to prioritize their time.
Drawing on their forty years of leadership research, this book offers three powerful habits that the top 10 percent of leaders use to Do What Matters Most. These three high performance habits are developing a written personal vision, identifying and setting Roles and Goals, and consistently doing Pre-week Planning. And Steve and Rob make an audacious promise: these three habits can increase anyone’s productivity by at least 30 to 50 percent. For organizations, this means higher profits, happier employees, and increased innovation. For individuals, it means you’ll find hours in your week that you didn’t know were there–imagine what you could do!
- there’s something most executives struggle to manage – and that’s their own time. Little surprise that many end up overlooking what matters most. Luckily, there’s something that can help you get the most of each day, both at work and at home. And that secret sauce is – prioritizing.
- task saturation: happens when a person has so much going on that he struggles to process everything the environment throws at him. This can lead to dangerous oversight.
- create a simple process for managing time more effectively.
- primary instruments: focus on the most critical.
- you can overcome task saturation by learning to prioritize
- The “do what matters most” method consists of developing three habits:
- writing down a personal vision,
- setting annual goals for both your professional and personal lives, and
- planning the next week in advance.
- having the drive to boost performance and productivity is great, but we now needed to step back and reshuffle her priorities.
- Before you can transform your approach to your priorities, you need to get a good grasp on where you currently stand.
- divide your daily activities into four categories.
- activities that are both high-stress and high-priority,
- activities that are low-stress and high-priority.
- activities that matter the least – stuff that’s either urgent and not important,
- not urgent and not important.
- only a quarter of your daily activities should be high-stress, high-priority. Seventy percent of your time should fall under category two: high priority, but low stress. you should only spend 5 to 15 percent of your time in unimportant item.
- when it comes to becoming the best version of yourself, you need to imagine the new you first – only then can you decide how to achieve it all. This sense of direction is known as your personal vision – a vivid image of where you want to end up.
- reflect on the following questions: Twenty years from now, what are some things you want to have accomplished? What would you like to improve about your life or your community? What qualities do you admire most in others?
- think about the different roles you have in life. We all wear different hats each day. We can be parent, partner, manager, employee – and we can also be self-focused, trying to keep our bodies healthy and alive. Write out between five and seven of these roles.
- Under each one, jot down your specific vision for it. Use the present tense to make the mental reality even more vivid
- You will know you’ve got the vision right if it evokes a range of emotions in you. You should feel excitement, but also a small degree of discomfort. This is because your vision is meant to help you grow.
- To boost productivity and performance, set annual goals that are measurable and achievable.
- write down your roles in a row just as you did when forming your vision. Only this time, set annual goals for each role. use the SMART acronym. It describes goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
- place them somewhere in sight – perhaps on your desk or by your bathroom mirror. This way, you’ll always refer to them – consciously or even subconsciously
- pre-week planning is essential for every one of us if we want to remain in control of our lives.
- Each week, it will force you to reflect on your priorities and schedule what matters most.
- Look at your calendar and block off 20 to 45 minutes each week for this exercise.
- Whatever you do, don’t leave it until Monday morning. After all, the whole point is to plan your week before it starts.
- take a minute to review your personal vision and goals.
- ask yourself what you can do in the coming week to move towards your goals.
- Articulating your priorities is a critical first step, but scheduling your goals is what really makes all the difference.
- It takes commitment and consistency to make goal-setting and pre-week planning second nature. But you’ll soon find out that following your vision and scheduling clear priorities will make you productive. And if that’s not enough, your life will become a lot less stressful, too!