Who doesn’t wish there was more time in the day? Do you ever feel like you aren’t giving 100% to anything because you just run out of time? Personally I just want some more quiet time to think and less time being chained responding to my email, which I could spend days doing.
It seems like we are being pulled in so many different directions that it’s difficult to keep track of, let alone stay on track of the multiple projects and to do’s we are constantly juggling in our professional and personal lives. (I admit that I sometimes lose the post-it notes that are supposed to help me manage my projects.) So when I saw an invite for an LMA event that would help me become a better project and time manager featuring leading recruiter and trainer Eva Wisnik, I immediately signed up for it (and made the time to attend it).
I also had the opportunity to interview Eva after the event to ask her for her top project and time management tips (thank you to my trusty producing partner Rob Kates for filming it). During the interview, we also talked about how to enhance our ability to manage the ever-increasing demands on our time and what trends Eva is seeing in the recruiting market today.
During the interactive program, we learned how to develop a system for smarter planning of our workdays and weeks (create lists and break up projects into digestible chunks, set timers for your tasks, do the worst things first), we also talked about using a daily action plan for effective time management, how to gain techniques for establishing organizational systems, how to identify work priorities and achieve them despite obstacles, how to master a system for controlling emails and other interruptions (think color coding and folders!), how to become more proactive on long-term projects while responding to daily crises (ask questions, break up tasks, create outlines, do not procrastinate, do things when you know you have the most energy), how to identify when to delegate, how to maximize existing resources, and we talked as a group (there were about 20 or so of us from all levels and firm sizes) on ways to manage and work effectively with colleagues and external clients. Don’t worry, I’ll explore all of these in more detail in an upcoming article!
One thing I did want to add is that I think a lot of us create unnecessary stress for ourselves. Maybe we are procrastinators (guilty as charged) or maybe we overextend ourselves (also guilty) or maybe we are perfectionists (okay, I am once again guilty). The problem with being a perfectionist is that you will never be able to get anything done and you need to get projects off your desk. Remember, good is good enough sometimes. Not everything has to be great. Some of your projects can be at 80 percent and others can be 100% – you need to pick and choose where you can bring real value and for the others, you can do a good job. It is not always necessary to give 100% to every single thing you do. I’m not sure that it’s even possible. Striving to be perfect all the time is overrated and will give you premature wrinkles.
More to come on this topic, but for now, watch my video interview with the terrific Eva Wisnik, and I want to thank Rob Kates as always and New York LMA Business Development SIG co-chairs Phil Cox and Amy Paquette for organizing such a useful event. I am glad that I made the time for it!
Here’s a guide to the video interview to help you follow along with key points:
- The 3:00pm daily “check-up” (2:57)
- Do the worst things on your list before 11am (3:20)
- How to make time for the important things (3:52)
- How junior team members can build their professional brand by showing time management skills (4:35)
- And find out what Eva would do if she had an extra hour in her day (6:42)
Let me know what you think of the video and Eva’s advice!