I was talking with a client this morning who simply has more to do in a day (and night) than they can get done. This is the norm for my senior executive clients. Their overflowing plates are not for lack of effort. Typically, leaders have responsibilities related directly to their roles (business development, for example) and a host of other responsibilities: external meetings, board presentations, public speaking, attending functions. These external activities can cost a lot of time, and while they’re often not directly related to an executive’s performance, they matter a lot. So, what to do when there is more work in the day than minutes, and you’ve already delegated (send me an email and I’ll send you my Delegation Map)?
Below you’ll find the criteria for my Delegation Filter, designed to evaluate those external activities. Think of the criteria as 3 spheres, with the ideal in the center where the spheres converge: You’re spending the bulk of your time on work that is enjoyable to you and provides both short and long term return. But what if an activity doesn’t meet that standard? The bad news is that if your role requires that you meet with the Board and you don’t like it, you’re probably still stuck with it. However, I often see clients attending a host of external obligations and appearances that might not be required but require a fair amount of time. The Delegation Filter is an opportunity to step back, take an aerial view, and assess from a different perspective. Next week I’ll walk through how the spheres relate to one another and how you can use them to make decisions about your time.
- Want to do and enjoy
- Has strategic benefit to you and your organization
- Provides ample return for your investment of time
In the meantime, another way to think of the Delegation Filter is: Where am I distributing my finite and precious resources of time, energy, and attention?
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