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Restructuring Your Time to Optimize for Productivity

Jill Macri

It is never too late to set new intentions and work rhythms for the year.  We are big fans of taking stock on a regular basis of how you are spending your time and assessing whether it is serving you and your team well.  Here are five steps that we recommend for restructuring your time:

  1. For one week track everything you do on your calendar. We encourage you to get granular: 1:1s, team meetings, candidate calls, email, heads down time, etc.
  2. Simultaneously use the Eisenhower Matrix to determine what you should be spending your time on given your team’s priorities for the first half of the year.
  3. At the end of the week analyze how your time was spent relative to your priorities. Look for places where time is wasted (hint: it’s usually email and standing meetings).
  4. Plot what an ideal week would look like based on your priorities.  Chunk activities. For example, one day might be all phone screens, another day all 1:1’s.  Check email three times a day at reliable times.  Remember to put in things that you need for your sanity — a walk in the afternoon or time to have your morning coffee.
  5. Change your calendar to match that ideal week.  

If step five feels impossible, just pilot it for a week or two.  Let your team and stakeholders know that you are experimenting in order to manage your time more efficiently this year.  

Harnessing your time effectively is potentially the most powerful thing you can do this year and also great behavior to model for your team.  

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