Time Management Revisited: Rethinking Time and The Power of Multipliers

Hola Todos!

Time management has been a common theme on DigNuggetville going all the way back to Post #7 on August 22nd, 2011 – “Big Rocks First!

Today’s time management nugget is courtesy of Jennifer Aaker, the General Atlantic Professor of Marketing at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. In her 4-minute video featured on the Leanin.org blog, Professor Aaker tells us not to multi-task in attempt to accomplish multiple different goals at the same time.  Rather, Professor Aaker asks us to rethink time and work on one activity that can fulfill multiple goals.  She calls this nugget a “multiplier.”

On a related note, Professor Aaker is a stellar marketing scholar and I would put very few professors in her echelon.  Back when I was in my doctoral program and President of American Marketing Association’s Doctoral Student Special Interest Group (DocSIG), Professor Aaker graciously agreed to be the keynote speaker at one of our conferences.  She recently published an excellent book titled “The Dragonfly Effect” which details effective and powerful ways to use social media to drive social change. A fantastic presentation on the book by Professor Aaker titled “How Ideas Take Flight” can be found on the Stanford Entrepreneurial Thoughts Leaders series.

Something to check out today…

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

A tribute to Stephen Covey

Hola Todos!

Stephen Covey, one of the world’s foremost leadership authorities, organizational experts and thought leaders, passed away yesterday.  However, the ideas from the sage including the landmark “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” as well as “First Things First,” “Principle-Centered Leadership,” and “The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness” will live on.  In my eyes, “The 7 Habits” is as close to management canon as “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” For information on the life of Mr. Covey click here and for an excellent tribute by Tom Peters in The Washington Post, click here.

It was Mr. Covey’s “First Things First” is what I will remember him most by as his “Big Rocks First” parable (click here) not only got me though my Ph.D. program, but also is a critical principle of my day-to-day time management.

 

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

 

 

 

Leadership: The Summer BIG Rock Goals

Hola Todos!

Well, the calendar tells us its summer time and we all know that come Labor Day, summer time comes to an end.  Mr. Mike’s post below reminds us to plan ahead and plan forward.  In my eyes, they only way we can accomplish this is by placing our Big Rocks First (click here for full post).  We should make a significant effort to plan for those two or three seminal events (vacation anyone?) of the summer and then fit all the other activities around those big rocks.

Mr. Mike, the floor is yours…

 

To:  The Great Leaders Who Have a Passion for Continuous Learning

With the beginning of summer for those of us in the northern hemisphere Philip Humbert ‘s article, “Make It One Heck of a Summer”, and its message of carpe diem again comes to mind.  I share this at the beginning of each summer as its point continues to serve us well as a moment of reflection of something great to come.  In the article he talks about how he and his wife in October seemed to always have the same conversation about summer:  “Oh, no!  Where did the summer go?”  Moments later the house was filled with whining and moaning, a few complaints and exclamations that, “I can’t believe we let it get away again!”  I believe his experience is similar to most of ours and that come October, we may look back with similar regrets.

His point is to remind us that we are in control.  Our summer and how we will spend it is our hands. It is about goal setting.  Human beings, he says, are by nature “goal-setting and goal-achieving creatures.”  We set goals everyday – from the planning of our daily schedule to planning what we will eat during the week.  So, if we are to have the greatest summer of our lives, we need to plan to make it the greatest.  Start today.  Circle dates on the calendar and mark them with things you want and love to do.  Fill it up and let it overflow the brim.  Live this summer as the greatest you have ever had!   It is your beautiful and special life to live to its fullest.  Stretch yourself to do new things, uncover new possibilities and happiness – for you, your family and those around you.  And in October, look back proudly with satisfaction at what you have achieved, learned and experienced.  Happiness and success is in your choosing and doing.  Choose wisely and choose well!

Have a beautiful day, a fantastic week and a joyous and magnificent summer!!!

Mike

Contact Information:

 

Michael M. Reuter

Director, Center for Leadership Development

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

Tel: (Office) 973.275.2528

Email: Michael.Reuter@shu.edu

 

 

MAKE Your New Years Resolution Stick! – Update: April Edition

Hola Todos!

With three months in the books and nine to go, I have to remind myself that this “goal setting stuff” is not a sprint – it’s a marathon.  If February was “challenging,” I’m not sure what to call March – “frustrating”?

March and April are two of my busiest months as an academic.  November is probably next in line.  The frustrating thing is I put in a lot of hours on these 5 goals as well as others and I have little to show for it.  Ouch….

While I certainly did not sit on my butt and do nothing, I also did not knock out or make significant progress on any of the Big 5 listed below.  Again, this is a marathon and not a sprint and I needed to spend more time focusing on the BIG ROCKS FIRST (click here for full blog post).

That said, here’s the update on my big five goals.

#1 – Focus & Simplify – Of all the 5 goals, I really lost track of this one in March.  I did not focus as well as I should and very few things were simplified.  I did not plan ahead as well as I did January or February.  I have to do a better job with my BIG ROCK lists on a weekly basis.

#2 – I need 2 academic research articles published this year – While I made substantial progress on my 2nd academic article, it is not ready for review.  I truly think it needs another 4 to 5 weeks and a realistic goal at the present time is to have it done by finals (e.g., the first week in May).

#3 – Run the Broad Street Run – Ouch – Ouch – Ouch – literally and figuratively.  All the exercise and then the new soccer games caused my knee to swell up.  I am very very lucky that the MRI and X-Ray showed no major damage; just swelling due to overuse given its current strength.  Temple Sports Medicine prescribed rest (I took two weeks off from running) and knee/leg strengthen exercises.  I’ve run 5 times since including a 55-minute Long Slow Distance (AKA LSD) run yesterday.  I am not where I thought I would be in April, I still believe I’ll be able to do the 10 Mile Broad Street Run.

#4 – Take a Deep Dive into Twitter – I’m not sure if I got bored with Twitter or I just didn’t have the time to play with it but I did not have any major epiphany with the service in March. I logged in now and then – I Tweeted – I added a few followers – ho hum – I did what I was supposed to do.  The only problem is now – I have a little voice in the back of my head telling me I should have picked YouTube.  Perhaps this summer….

#5 – Double my DigNuggetville Traffic – February was the best month in the history of DigNuggetville blog. March did not top it.  My December, January, February three month streak where each new month averaged higher than the previous month ended in March.  March was still good but not better that February – even with 2 more days.  On the bright side, I learned a few things traffic-wise and I believe a summertime redesign is in order.

In closing, If there would be one word I’d like to tattoo to my arm for the remaining months, it would be – perseverance.  I have nine more months to go and I WILL have progress in the end.

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, PhD

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

 

 

 

Leaders Understand that Time is Finite

Hola Todos!

Mr. Mike has an excellent thought for us today.  It’s not surprising to anyone reading this post that the laws of physics have not changed – we only have 24 hours in any given day.  Usually, we just put lots of hours in but never take a step back to examine how poorly we manage out time.  In summary, place those big rocks first (click here for full post) and increase your effectiveness.

Mike, the floor is yours….

To: The Great Leaders Who Have a Passion for Continuous Learning

William Penn, English entrepreneur and philosopher, wrote: “Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.”  One of the challenges that all great leaders face is the effective use of their time – those precious seconds, minutes and hours that relentlessly vanish from each day’s calendar.  In his article, “Time Doesn’t Scale,” (click here for full post) Seth Godin suggests a change in approach in the way of looking at time and how we use it to increase the great leader’s effectiveness.

Time doesn’t scale…But bravery does.

The challenge of work-life balance is a relatively new one, and it is an artifact of a world where you get paid for showing up, paid for hours spent, paid for working.  In that world, it’s clearly an advantage to have a team that spends more time than the competition. One way to get ahead as a freelancer or a factory worker of any kind (even a consultant at Deloitte) was simply to put in more hours. After all, that made you more productive, if we define productivity as output per dollar spent.

But people have discovered that after hour 24, there are no more hours left. Suddenly, you can’t get ahead by outworking the other guy, because both of you are already working as hard as Newtonian physics will permit. Just in time, the economy is now rewarding art and innovation and guts. It’s rewarding brilliant ideas executed with singular direction by aligned teams on behalf of truly motivated customers. None of which is measured on the clock.

John Cage [American composer] doesn’t work more hours than you. Neither does Carole Greider [molecular biologist]. Work/life balance is a silly question, just as work/food balance or work/breathing balance is.  It is not really up to you after a point.  Instead of sneaking around the edges, it might pay to cut your hours in half but take the intellectual risks and do the emotional labor you’re capable of.

Henry David Thoreau, American author and poet, writes:  “It’s not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?”  Be about your greatness… the incredible gifts within that are yet to be discovered, the ideas and innovations you will find by looking through different eyes, the dreams you will achieve because you have the courage and bravery to take risks and to be more than you ever dreamed you could be.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

Mike

 

Contact Information:

Michael M. Reuter

Director, Center for Leadership Development

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

Tel: (Office) 973.275.2528

Email: Michael.Reuter@shu.edu

 

Topic Talk Thursday – Conquering the “To-Do” List

Hola Todos!

This week’s theme continues with today’s topic talk “Conquering the ‘To-Do’ List.” Over break, I read an excellent article in The Wall Street Journal (click here) that was a perfect fit for a New Years Resolution Themed week.

Think about it – if we are going to put our Big Rocks first and then fit all the pebbles, sand, and water around the Big Rocks, then we need to sit down and decide was is “mission critical” and was is not.  So the first step is to segment all your tasks.  The funny thing is, as mentioned in the article, some 23% of list-makers spend more time making the lists than doing the tasks on them.  The second step is to not let the list get out of control. Most people write EVERYTHING down in some 5 or 6-page document and then cannot deal with a list that is too long and unorganized.

Here’s my suggestion: (1) your “to-do” list should be electronic so you do not have to keep re-writing it when the list needs to be updated.  I use the free app that came with my iPhone because it free and the phone is always with me.  A MS Word document would also work, as it’s very easy to edit.  (2) Perhaps most important, it should be “To-Do” lists (plural) not “To-Do” list (singular).  Yes, you still need to sit down for an hour or so and create that 5 to 6-page Master “To-Do” but the Master list should be different from the “Daily” or “Weekly” list.  In other words, you need your goals for the day or the week in front of you face at all times, however, the Master list only gets reviewed once per week or so.  It’s from the Master list is where you pull the daily/weekly goals from.  In addition, the Master list should be organized by time-horizon (e.g., Stuff to do this Month, Stuff to do in the Near-Term (3 to 6 months) and Stuff to Do in the Long-Term (over 6 months).

Something to think about today…

Best

Dr. Dan-o

 

 

An Easy Lesson on “How to Fail”

Hola Todos!

Benjamin Franklin was a lot of things: Businessman, Philosopher, Statesman, Diplomat, Scientist, Entrepreneur and Printer.  One of his many famous quotes was, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

If you have big goals and big dreams, plan forward and drop those “big rocks first.” (see link here).

Best regards

Dr. Dan-o