Just do it!

Waiting for the perfect timing, the perfect decision, the perfect way to put it ,……. You will wait forever!

so many senior managers, CEOs or company owners stall and delay decision making because they are afraid of making the wrong decision.  “What if I make the wrong decision? how much will it cost me?” …. Well from my point of view, waiting for the perfect decision will cost you much more than deciding and moving forward.  Even if you decide on something and turns out to be a wrong decision, you have the mistake to learn from and become better able in the future to make the right decision.   But delaying, stalling and hesitating will make you stand still.  You will not learn from a good or bad experience because you will not have an experience to learn from.  The worst thing in the world is standing still.

get-it-done-coffee-mug

Moving forward is always the way to grow and become better. And believe it or not even wrong decisions and mistakes are a form of moving forward because you learn from the experience and use it to grow.

I am not saying of course being hasty, but once you have the information you need and you studied your move right, make up your mind and take action. Don’t stall and hesitate.

Stop wasting opportunities and “Just do it!”  ….

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Lethal habits

Procrastination

 

Two habits I find to be lethal around the office: Procrastination and Perfectionism.  They waste time, money and energy.  Procrastination is the habit some people have of delaying tasks for no good reason except that they keep coming up with excuses why it should wait.  Sometimes it is because they think they can’t do it but they don’t want to admit it, because it is a big task and they are unable to divide it to smaller manageable tasks, because they are wasting their time on other issues that don’t really matter, because they don’t like the task but can’t say, …. so many reasons for procrastination and the result is delaying work, missing deadlines, increasing project budgets, increasing costs, angry customers and so many other negative effects.

 

Perfectionism is also another lethal habit, it is when a task takes too much time more than it should because the person wants it to be 100% perfect, so he keeps revising his work too many times and he always finds something to fix even if it is not relevant or effective.  One of the reasons of procrastination is also perfectionism, people tend to wait until it is the best time to do the job and finish it perfectly well and this time never comes! Of course perfecting your work is a must but when it turns into a negative thing that makes you take double the time to finish a task you must stop and ask: Am I spending my time right?

efficiency-perfection

 

Every job must take its right time to finish it right no more and no less.  Taking too much time under the claim that I am perfecting what I am doing is actually too much a cost to handle.  Companies can actually lose a lot of money and customers because of missing deadlines.

So how can we handle employees with such habits?

1- Make sure they are doing the right job for their character.  They should not be involved in any job that requires writing documents, offers, presentations, doing designs,….. Anything of the sort will take forever to finish and they will never get it done.

2- When assigning a task for such people never assign big tasks at once.  Divide any big task to smaller manageable ones and give them the small ones, one by one

3- Don’t tell them the real deadline, but rather make it a sooner tighter deadline to make them start feeling guilty for being late before your actual deadline.

4- Keep explaining the scope and aim of the task and reminding them of it so that they won’t go on perfecting irrelevant details and to make sure they understand the task at hand 100% so that they won’t procrastinate because they can’t do it.

5- These people must be handled with care. Never tell them in the face that they are wasting time and costing the company money but rather try to encourage them and give positive feedback about their work but at the same time keep reminding them of the time factor.

6- Assign check points with every project they are involved in and don’t wait for the delivery date to check on them.  Check points will make you evaluate the work done on intervals and remind them of the deadline.  Keep pushing on the time factor but gently without stressing them out.  Most probably people with these habit if stressed out will delay even more.

7- Give them training courses on time management.

Sometimes employees with such habits produce very high quality outcome but their throughput is the problem, so don’t lose them or get rid of them but rather try hard to get the best out of them.

But what if you keep trying and they keep wasting time and increasing your costs? what if it starts to threaten your business and reputation in the market? what then? Needs thinking especially in the case of perfectionists.  I would say if you keep trying and there is no other way but to replace this employee then do it because at one point of time you will regret the lost opportunities because of them.

More and more on productivity

I agree with this article, we need to plan our time right and choose carefully what to do when:

 

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505125_162-57589536/6-things-that-feel-productive-but-arent/

especially the point of pointless perfectionism. Some people waste a lot of time and effort trying to make things perfect when actually it doesn’t  have to be 100% perfect.  Or maybe if you go do some other thing and be more productive, when you come back to the same task you will do it even better.  Plan your time right and you will be more productive.

 

Busy or Productive?

Being always busy does not mean that you are actually getting anything done!

“I don’t have time” , “too much to do” , “didn’t have time to read your email” , “ImageNo didn’t see your message, I am overloaded”

Familiar with these sentences? You are busy busy all the time but unfortunately you are not productive.  You can be overloaded and you can have a lot of things to do but yet you can get things done.

Time and priority management are the keys to success!

1- Prioritize your tasks. What is urgent comes first then what is important then normal tasks.

2- Don’t accept interruption while you are doing something. Interruption is a waste of time and effort and causes erroneous output. SO unless it is really urgent, once you start a task don’t leave  it until done.

3- Read your email and any form of messages you receive once you get them. Sometimes you’re concentrating in the task at hand but the incoming message could be related and will cause you to redo a lot of work unless you read it on time.  So go through your messages quickly once received and read carefully the ones you need to read now and then once done with the task at hand start reading the rest. Sometimes the reply is as simple as “Received thanks”, but people need it so do it!

4- Shorter job first is a valuable advice.  If you have something that will not take time and is very simple, why make it wait for a task that could take days? waste of time and effort.  Get all the small tasks out of the way and then give the time and concentration to the long tasks. You will be amazed that finally your pipeline is not full of yet to do tasks anymore because you simply planned your time right.

5- Stop trying to show everyone how busy and overloaded you are and get down to work and get things done!  When people see how much you accomplish they will appreciate you. But when you talk all the time about how busy you are and then the size of your output is negligible no one will acknowledge your being overloaded!

6- Focus on being productive not busy

7- DO it NOW not later!

Effort is very good and most appreciated but without accomplishments, real output , getting things done, effort becomes meaningless!

So stop whining all the time about putting a lot of effort, put it right and in the right way and on the right time and you yourself will be proud of how much you accomplish.

Is Management Dead?

Do we still need managers? or is it about Leaders now?

We always say that We need someone who inspires employees, a role model, someone who injects the culture of innovation in the organization, someone who makes employees have a sense of ownership and hence become willing to take the lead …. All are traits of Leaders. So are managers needed?

Going back to the saying: Management is doing things right, Leadership is doing the right things …could resolve this question for us.

Leaders draw the road ahead and lead you in the right direction, managers make sure that you get there.

So no management is not dead, but is it done the right way? In my opinion management is the main reason behind the failure of many organizations to reach their goals.  It is managers’ main role to motivate employees to help them achieve.

Image

 

 

It is managers who help employees walk through the path the leaders draw.

 

 

 

So choosing the right manager in the right place is critical to the success of an organization. Steve Jobs said:

“My model of management is the Beatles. The reason I say that is because each of the key people in the Beatles kept the others from going off in the directions of their bad tendencies.They sort of kept each other in check. And then when they split up, they never did anything as good….”

Management should create the harmony that makes people want to give and able to work together. Without that management will kill all chances for success of individuals and hence the entire organization.

Is it your career, your plan? Or should companies take part?

Just read this post:

http://dalemyers.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/its-your-career-your-plan/#comment-333

And I thought, is it really entirely up to the employees to devise their development plan and act on it? OR should companies take part?

What I think is it should be a mutual responsibility. Yes, employees should work on themselves and have their own development plan if they want a career. But companies also have to nurture this if they want to excel. Companies that dedicate budgets for employee development, by maybe sharing expenses with employees often do better than companies that don’t. When employees feel that their company cares they do their best to develop their skills to perform better and hence get promoted. Companies will not devise the path and help achieve it, they will only help out by offering special packages, discounts, sharing of expenses, promotions if certain degrees are earned …..This will definitely create a sense of belonging to the place and will motivate employees to do their best.

What do you think? …..

Waiting to hear your thoughts

Bad managers and their effect on productivity – Survey results

In my last post, I was claiming that bad managers cause employee demotivation and hence decrease productivity and increase turnover rates.  I conducted an online Survey and here are the results:

226 people participated in answering the survey and the outcome was:

1- In answering the question of “If you had the bad manager described in question 1 would you think of resigning?” – 67.3% answered YES

2- In answering the question “Do you think you can give your full potential and be productive with a bad manager” – 80.5% answered NO

3- In answering the question of “Assuming you work with a bad manager now will you think of quitting” – 67.3% answered YES

4- In answering the question “Do you personally think that a bad manager can negatively affect productivity and increase turnover rates” – 97.3% answered YES

5- In answering the question “If you have a bad manager and you don’t quit it is because…” – 50.5% answered can’t find a better opportunity and 42.7% answered can’t find another job with the same or better salary.

6- Amazingly the answers to the question “How many bad managers did you encounter in your career” were:

52.3% said 2 -5

32.3% said only one

3.2% said 6 – 10

0.5% said more

and the ones who said None were 11.8%

This means that there are a lot of bad managers out there!

Below are the results in graphs:

Hello….is that YOU?

Do you have piles of “To Do” lists and Reminders on your hands? Do you keep writing the same tasks over and over again in every new To Do list? Do you keep saying I will do it and you never do? Do you keep jumping from one task to the next and you always find an excuse why not to get it done and finally you feel exhausted but when you check you can’t signal any task as done?

Is that YOU? Well, you have a procrastination problem!

Procrastination is a serious problem that can ruin your career and even an entire company if you are on the top of the hierarchy.

How to heal this?

1- Acknowledge that you have this problem and take the decision to heal it.

2- Understand why it happens? Why do you procrastinate?

a- Waiting for the right time or the right mood to get it done?

b- A fear of failure?

c- Underdeveloped decision making skills?

d- Poor Time Management Skills?

e- The task is unpleasant or overwhelming?

f- Perfectionism? “wait until I can make it 100% perfect”

g-……OR WHAT??

3- Take active steps to BEAT it.

Asking HOW???

Many things can be done to heal procrastination, for example:

– If the task is overwhelming, divide it into smaller task and take one at a time until done

– Always have an Urgent/important matrix to decide which task should you start with first.  Answer questions like is it urgent or not? there is also the rule of shorter job first that can help you get 10 small tasks out of the way before getting into something that will take a longer time span.

– Create an action plan and STICK TO IT

– Remind yourself of the consequences of not getting a task done on time.  Like for example by calculating the cost of your time on the job everyday you will realize how much you cost your company and hence your conscious will force you to get it done.  You could also weigh how this will affect the company image with the customer, its effect on other colleagues who are waiting on you to do something else and so on….

– Create your own reward and punishment plan to encourage yourself.

– If you know you are too weak to be able to do all the above, ask a colleague or friend you trust to check on you.  This way you’ll be ashamed to keep saying not yet.

There are many ways to heal this problem if you really want to, but you have to admit that you have it first.