List of All Courses
Vol. 1 No. 8, October 2009 Copyright 2009 by Wolf
Feel free to forward this eNewsletter to other Nutrition Professionals.
1. NUTRITION NEWS YOU CAN USE
Up to 80 million Americans Have Cardiovascular Disease
2. CPE BUDGET SAVER SPECIALS
3. COMPLETELY REVISED AND UPDATED CPE COURSE
Time Management: How to Stretch the Time Rubber Band, 3rd Ed. Wolf
J. Rinke, PhD, RD, CSP, C198, 5 CPEUs, $44.95. Learning need codes:
1000, 1120, 7000.
4. TIME MANAGEMENT: HOW TO STRETCH THE TIME RUBBER BAND-Part I
Time is your second most precious resource. It's the only resource you can't buy, borrow, rent or produce. Its preciousness exists because time is the only commodity that is required for everything we do. Unlike most products we deal with, time is totally perishable and absolutely irreplaceable. In fact the only thing that is more precious than time is our health. Unfortunately, most of us are equally careless with both.
This two-part article will help you manage your time more effectively. Come to think of it, time management is a misnomer. Each of us is provided with 24 hours every day. No matter how well you manage it, it still only adds up to 24 hours. Instead of managing time, we manage and prioritize the activities in those 24 hours. And we get everything done that we perceive to be important. (Read that again, it is a critical concept.) Before you nix this idea, please pause a moment, reflect and recall the one activity that is the most important to you. On the personal side it may be being with your family, football or gardening. On the professional side it may be making more money, being recognized by your peers or getting promoted. Now think back: how often have you been unable to devote enough time to whatever it is that is the most important to you? I bet it doesn't happen very often, does it? In other words, most people make time for all the things they consider important. In other words, time is like a rubber band.
Time management experts tell you that you must learn to say no. I would like you instead to say yes to more things than you think you will be able to accomplish. Why? Because professor Parkinson was absolutely right when he said: Work expands to fill the time available for its completion. The rubber band approach to time management will also help you get rid of perfectionitis because it is better to do the right things right than to do all things right. And it will help you become a more effective delegator and coach. (What's not to like?)
Here's how to stretch your time rubber band and help you get the most out of every 24 hours:
Record Your Time
Before you can make more time, you must first figure out how you are currently spending it by keeping a time log for at least three to five days. Do this as soon as possible after you have completed a particular task. An easy way to do this is to record your activities on your calendar-electronic or paper, in half-hour increments. (My Time Management CPE program has an easy to use form you can use for this purpose http://www.wolfrinke.com/CEFILES/cepd.html#C198.)
Analyze Your Time Expenditures
Now ask several questions. The first and most important: What would happen if I did not do this task or activity at all? If the answer is nothing, stop doing it! (Just this one step will save you lots of time!) If not sure, figure out how what you are currently doing originated. Then go back and find out whether the originator wants you to continue, or if it is still required in a current regulation. Note the words are required and current, not nice to have or because we always have done it that way, or even it is in one of our standard operating procedures. If you can't figure out how the practice originated, and you don't see any positive impact on the bottom line, quit doing it. If it is really important, someone will ask about it.
Look for Time Patterns
Next look for patterns in your use of time so that you can chunk your time. Let's assume that your 3-5 day time record reveals that you are faced with constant interruptions from e-mail, telephone, employees and a wide variety of administrative functions. Combine these. For example, only talk to vendors and answer e-mails and other routine calls during specified times of the day.
To deal with constant interruptions consider abolishing the sacrosanct open door policy. (Yes, you read right!) Instead, schedule a large chunk of time to practice management by walking around (MBWA). Handle all other meetings by appointment only.
Similarly, routine admin functions should be handled only during a
certain period of the day, ideally when you tend to be least productive.
Obviously you must still take care of the true emergencies, which should
be analyzed, especially the recurrent ones. The reason is that frequent
crises are an indication of sloppy management. Processes must be put
into place to routinize them so that someone other than you can handle
Your next step is to categorize your time to figure out whether you spend most of your time on trivial tasks-the "irrelevant many"-or on the important biggies-the "critical few." The Pareto principle, better known as the 80-20 rule, maintains that 80 percent of the important results are accomplished in 20 percent of the time. This phenomenon exists because work falls into two major categories, the critical few and the irrelevant many. The irrelevant many include all the mundane things such as filling out forms, attending meetings, answering e-mails and so on which will devour about 80 percent of your time. The time that you have left, about 20 percent, can be devoted to the critical few. These will determine whether your company will be a leader in the industry and whether you will be promoted or get a bonus. They include such things as taking care of customers, interviewing, cost-cutting, system development, etc. I call these winning results areas (WRAs). When you allocate more time to the critical few, you will realize massive productivity increases. For example, by allocating just one percent more of your time to the critical few, you will realize an increase of four percent in the WRAs. That represents a 400 percent return on your time investment. Bingo!
Now let's go back to your time record to figure out how you can allocate more time to the high pay-off WRAs. (To facilitate this I've developed a Task Analysis Grid (TAG), see my Time Management CPE program, http://www.wolfrinke.com/CEFILES/cepd.html#C198.) Tasks that are of short duration and simple should be delegated or done really fast because, no matter how well you do them, they will only have a 20 percent pay-off. Tasks that of short duration but are important and/or complex are probably "critical few" type items. Consider delegating these to team members you can count on or do them yourself. Be sure to group them, so that you can do more than one while you are in this thinking mode.
Tasks that you are currently doing that take a long time and are complex are likely to have a 400 percent payoff. Allocate as much time as possible to these, and if you have more than you can handle, prioritize them. To increase your effectiveness, set aside a large chunk of time and a time island--a time and place where you will not be disturbed, except for true emergencies. Work on these during a time of the day when you are at your best. Subdivide each project into smaller self-contained components and work on one component at a time until it is done so that you have a sense of accomplishment. Remember, these are worthy of your undivided attention because they will take you and your organization to the next level.
Be sure to read the next issue of this eNewsletter where you will learn the magic of goal setting and discover powerful steps that will enable you to make lots more discretionary time.
Source: Excerpted from Time Management: How to Stretch the Time Rubber Band, 3rd Ed., W. J. Rinke, PhD, RD, CSP, C198, 5 CPEUs, http://www.wolfrinke.com/CEFILES/cepd.html#C198.
5. HEAR WOLF "HOWL"--I MEAN SPEAK, AND EARN CPE CREDITS
11/10/09, 1:00-2:30 ET, 2 CPEUs, Single participant: $39.95, multiple
11/17/09, 1:00-2:30 ET, 2 CPEUs, Single participant: $39.95, multiple
Want to hear me live? Why not recommend me to your dietetic association so that I can help make your next meeting a "howling success." As a way of giving back, I speak to ADA groups at significantly reduced rates. Plus I will make you a hero in front of all your colleagues!
6. HUMOR BREAK
7. ABOUT THE EDITOR
Dr. Wolf J. Rinke, RD, CSP is the president of Wolf Rinke Associates--an accredited provider of easy to use CPE home study programs for nutrition professionals since 1990 available at www.easyCPEcredits.com. He is also a highly effective management consultant and executive coach who specializes in building peak performance organizations, teams and individuals, and an author of numerous CPE home study courses, audio/video programs as well as several best selling management, leadership and self-development books including Make it a Winning Life--Success Strategies for Life, Love and Business. In addition he is an internationally recognized keynote speaker and seminar leader who delivers customized presentations that combine story telling, humor and motivation with specific "how to" action strategies that participants can apply immediately to improve their personal and professional lives. Preview a demo at www.WolfRinke.com or call 800-828-9653. If you have questions, or would like him to address a specific issue or topic please e-mail him at WolfRinke@aol.com.
8. PRIVACY STATEMENT AND SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION
We will not make your name or e-mail address available to anyone. Period!
If this was forwarded to you and you would like to receive your own
FREE subscription click here.