3 Ideas to help focus on the important work

March 9, 2015 § Leave a comment

For the past 12 months I have been focusing on staff appreciation. I considered all of the different ways that I could best appreciate the hard work and commitment of the team and it boiled down to organisation. There was great help on hand from my mentor/coach and it was a year of putting in place routines, processes and feedback loops so that I could achieve the goal. There were 3 Ideas that proved very helpful in my work:

1. Write down your annual focus every day

I have many tasks to complete and not enough time to complete them so I have to make decisions. I was sick of doing 8 things half heartedly each year so I decided to pick just one task. Organisation. I enjoyed the Peter Bregman article and chose to write down my one task on a new post it note each morning. Each day I would write down organisation at the top of my post it note and each day I aimed to do at least one thing to help reach this goal. On other days I could put in a few hours work on this task.

2. Schedule your most important work in the calendar

Most important work that I complete is not urgent. Most important work that I complete doesn’t have a 24 hour deadline. Urgent work can sometimes take over our focus on a regular basis and we need ways to combat this. I had a permanent booking with my mentor so that I could ensure the meeting would take place. This meant that I always had the opportunity receive feedback on my progress and could give account of my decisions. George Couros always asks good questions about priorities and effective planning. 

3. Have a routine to measure progress

It’s easy to begin work on an annual goal but with the busyness of a school year it can be difficult to remain focussed. I found that by booking a one hour meeting with myself each week I could ask questions about my progress, reflect on aspects of my project and then see if changes were required to keep on track. By asking the same questions every week I was able to benefit from a consistent framework and enjoyed looking back on my reflections.

What routines do you use to focus on important work?

What accountability do you need to reach your goals?

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