As your company grows and the demands on your time grow more and more monumental, it is easy to fall into the trap of just reacting to the emails, forms and communication that bombard you with increasing frequency.
Your insurance company wants you to get some forms signed for them. You answer the phone, and a payroll processing company wants to take you to lunch. Your recruiters are scheduling interviews. Legal council has some contract adjustments to discuss. Before you know it, the calendar for your whole week is full. While all these things sound quite important, what’s more important is that you become the decider of what is important.
If you live in this reactive state, then you are letting the world around you decide what is most important for your business. It’s not that the world is necessarily out to get you, it’s just that time is finite. If you want to truly be the master of your destiny then you need to take control of what is put on your calendar, what calls you take, what calls you make, and what deserves your attention.
So what am I suggesting you do? Don’t be a slave to your to-do list. You should have three or less major endeavors that you are personally pursuing. Being an executive is about looking into that crystal ball and trying to skate to where the puck will be. Once you have decided what you want to do then it’s time to either do it or delegate it or scheduled it. There is really no other decision. The delay it, file it for later decisions are for hoarders. If it isn’t important enough to get someone started on it now or schedule it, then it isn’t important. If it becomes important again later then you will be aware of it because you will be doing it or delegating it.
In the transition to this mindset, you will need to frequently ask yourself the following question throughout the day.
Am I doing the most valuable thing I could be doing for the future of my business?
The answer will not always be yes, but if it is not yes at least twice a day then you are doing something wrong.