As I work with talented administrators across the country, I hear one familiar refrain over and over:
“I don’t have TIME to add one more thing to my calendar—whether that is advocacy work on behalf of arts education or fundraising or a myriad of other essential tasks that I know would make a difference to my organization or to the arts generally”.
In fact, you may not have time to read this blog post! Yes, there is always the option of committing a few more hours to our day, making that a 16-hour day instead of a 14-hour day, but in the name of sanity, that is not an option for this discussion.
In an effort to discover some realistic options, I have reviewed the literature on standard time management and discovered some of the suggestions that we have probably all heard before.
- Start each day by listing the tasks and activities you want to accomplish.
- Rank these tasks and activities in order of priority. List the three to five most difficult tasks and try to get those out of the way first.
- Block out time on your calendar for the highest priority task on the list.
Yes, all good but what else? I am impressed with two ideas that my partner, David Bury, suggests:
The first is called Reallocating the Easy Twenty Percent: Ask yourself, what things I currently do that someone else (a staff member, a board member, a volunteer) could do nearly as well as I? Create a list of those things. Identify what person(s) are best qualified to handle the tasks, recruit them, and then ask them if they would take these on for you. You will be surprised. They will say yes. Read the rest of this entry »