Can We Manufacture Time?
Do you get to the end of the week and wonder what you actually accomplished? Where did all the time go? Do you know, deep down, that you and your team are wasting time on pointless activities? Are you frustrated with the amount of time it takes to get important things done in your business?
As leaders, we often wish we had more time in the day. What if we could get more done in less time AND get better results? Can ‘the boat’ move faster with less effort or is this the impossible dream? Are we chasing a unicorn here?
I’d argue we can actually “manufacture” time in our business. How? By managing the moving parts using effective tools, we can create time by eliminating distractions, confusion, mistakes and unhealthy conflict. The cool thing is, once this system gets rolling, it truly takes less time to generate improved results.
I want to talk about the biggest time-monsters I have seen and briefly highlight the EOS™ tools that help address each of these challenges. I am speaking from personal experience. I’ve seen it happen. I’ve lived it.
Wrong People in Your Business
When we have an employee who doesn’t fit our culture, they can throw off the rest of the team. This can show up in many different ways such as starting “fires”, creating drama and unhealthy conflict, not giving their full effort because they’re disengaged, or they generally don’t believe in the direction of the company so they subtly work against it. In all these examples, we waste an incredible amount time and energy putting out the fires, managing conflict and/or picking up the slack. These people may even be really good at what they do, but we have essentially hired the wrong people and need to deal with it.
So how do we know who fits and who doesn’t? It starts with knowing your core values. Then, using them as a people filter, looking at who’s living them and who’s not. Use the People Analyzer tool to make expectations clear and help move the “wrong” people out of the company.
Lack of Role Clarity
A common challenge I have seen among companies I’ve worked with is when roles aren’t clear, things go wrong and time is wasted – in a BIG way. I’ve witnessed many of the following:
- Not knowing who’s leading and who’s following or who’s accountable for what
- Duplication of efforts, i.e. two people doing the same thing
- Lack of personal authority to solve problems – not knowing how much you can do
- The “I thought you were doing it” scenario where important tasks get missed
With all of the above, create general confusion. Teams spend significant time clarifying who’s doing what or solving issues created by the lack of role clarity. To solve this, we need to spend time determining the right structure for our organization. We call this the Accountability Chart. Create role clarity by defining all of the seats along with the roles and responsibilities. Once it’s complete, share it, make it visible and live it. For real. Not just a fun chart on the wall that no one follows.
Ineffective meetings often start late, end late, do not have a clear, effective agenda and rarely get meaningful work done. These meetings meander off on tangents, are monopolized by strong-willed individuals and leave attendees unsatisfied and frustrated, or worse confused and demotivated. Considering the time-value of the people in these ineffective meetings, they become a monumental cost to the organization with minimal benefit.
But there is hope. Believe it or not, effective meetings are possible but it takes a good game plan and some discipline. The EOS Level 10 Meeting™ Agenda and The Issues Solving Track™ will help you increase communication, team health, traction, and accountability. All of these benefits save the company hours upon hours of time.
Chasing Shiny Things or AD’OS’D (Attention Deficit ‘Oh-Squirrel’ Disorder)
A significant time waster is when we get distracted by things that look interesting and we pursue them instead of doing what we do well. As leaders, we may change direction and everyone then follows, prematurely abandoning work already done. Or we change what we’re doing while the rest of the company is left to pick up the pieces.
The solution to AD’OS’D is using your Core Focus as your filter and guiding system. Core Focus is the combination of “why we do what we do” and “what we do better than anyone.” Once clear, this enables us to filter opportunities, so we can say no to things that don’t fit inside that Core Focus. It’s hard to say, no. I get it. But we can’t build an amazing company chasing every shiny opportunity that runs by. For more on this topic, check out The Nutty Entrepreneur.
The other way to handle shiny things is by relying on ‘the realist’. Find that strong leader that operates on logic and reason versus emotion and creativity. We call this person the Integrator and they help keep the excitable, ideas people grounded. Ideas are important, we just can’t execute every idea and the Integrator helps keep us focused on the things that fit our larger game plan.
As leaders in entrepreneurial companies, time is such a precious resource. We only have so much, so we must allocate it extremely effectively. These are just a handful of the EOS™ tools that help us “manufacture” time. I work with clients who now get more done in less time. It has been an incredibly powerful experience to assist with this transformation. It helps more than just leaders, it impacts everyone in the company. The culture improves, the results improve. It’s very exciting to see.
If you, or someone you know, would like help addressing this kind of issue, I would love to have a conversation about how I can help you achieve Vision, Traction and Healthy in your company through EOS™ Implementation. Let’s book a time to chat. Or you can download the EOS™ Tools for FREE.
This blog is a work of passion for me. I would love to hear what you think of my musings, please comment below with your ideas/feedback.
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