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Alan Lakein, in his book, How To Get Control of Your Time and Your Iife, offers some basic ideas about establishing goals and setting priorities. He recommends that every manager define long-term objectives or goals as things that have to be done during the next six months. He recommends ranking both life and job goals according to an a, b, c system: (a) a goal of high value and importance, (b) a goal of lesser importance, such as improving relations with a boss or subordinate, and (c) goals of low value. Lakein then offers six suggestions for more effective management of time:
- List your goals and set priorities.
- Make a daily "to do" list. Goals cannot be accomplished without activities and listing those activities that have to be done each day helps to accomplish your objectives.
- Always start with the "a" and not the "c." Less important activities are seductive because they are usually relatively easy to handle and can be accomplished in a short time. However, they also provide excellent excuses for not dealing with the more important, difficult and substantial objectives at hand.
- Continually ask yourself,” What is the best utilization of my time right now?" Take what be calls a "Swiss cheese approach''' to over whelming tasks. If there are ten minutes available before lunch, take a bit of an “a” and begin the process of dealing with those things that you are trying to avoid. Whether preparing a budget or disciplining an employee, begin the process and move it forward.
- Handle each piece of paper only once.
- Do it now.
Sometimes crying or laughing
are the only options left,
and laughing feels better right now.
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