Don’ta worry – Dumb Business thinking to avoid Part 2

Have you ever experienced the debilitating situation of not knowing what decision to make in a difficult circumstance? Or found yourself overwhelmed by the sheer volume of email and interruptions within your workday?

In case of the former it is caused by uncertainty (not enough facts) and a less than comfortable risk of decision failure.

In case of the latter, in many cases the day to day interruptions really get in the way of the big picture and most important jobs to be done. That type of continual interruption will make you highly ineffective – so you’ve either got to live with it, or change the environment.

I’m a big fan of getting time management in order, and my continual reference book here is by Alan McKenzie called The Time Trap. In this book he identifies the top 20 time wasters, and specifically how to deal with them.

My father would always say “Don’ta worry – what’s the worst that can happen?”. He isn’t Italian, but for some reason this simple sentence would provide some perspective and give the mind some necessary breathing space (distraction if you like) that allows the subconcious to trigger a logical decision.

5 thoughts on “Don’ta worry – Dumb Business thinking to avoid Part 2

  1. My solution to the latter is really simple. Get a top-notch PA, and keep fine tuning your routine with her until you never look at email or get bothered by voicemail again. The secret to this is getting a PA that’s outstanding, don’t waste your time with one that’s substandard.

  2. Justin, great post. The Time Trap is one of my faves — very applicable and I am all about application to firmly root relevant information intake. I echo Toddney’s comment. I gave my assistant access to all my email. I created several subfolders to put incoming messages into: HOT, To Act On, To Read, To File. Then instead of scanning all emails I’d go directly to the first 2 in the morning and after lunch. If my assistant was unable to determine the significance of a message they could directly respond to th sender and ask clarification — this freed me to do what I needed to and not get bogged down.
    Another great tool I used was a Time Tracking sheet. I kept a 3-ring binder and would keep track of my time for a week. The sheet was divided into to columns: Desired to complete and Actually complete. It was always enlightening to see where my time was really going. Based on that information I could adjust my schedule and focus less on my time-wasters.
    Nice Blog. You’re right, our Blogs have a lot in common. You’re doing a good job of posting regularly. Keep it up!

  3. Thanks for the feedback! Sounds like this is really working for you which is great. Similar to your time tracking sheet, I’ve got a timelog and I find it really keeps me focussed. Recently I worked a to do list that required about 9 hours work in a 8.5 hour day that had 7 hours of meeting committed. It seemed amazing at the time, but by really focussing on the timelog and managing my time I got everything done.

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