The Art of Time Management and Leadership Observations Mary K. Estes, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Molecular Virology and Microbiology and MedicineGI Director, TMC Digestive Diseases Center Baylor College of Medicine Houston, Texas The Art of Time Management Time Management Determine your priorities and your goals Once articulated, they will help you judge how you wish to apportion your time and effort Time Management is a Myth No matter how organized we are, there are still only 24 hrs per day Time doesn’t change All we can manage is ourselves and what we do with the time we have! Implement a Time Management Plan Create time management goals Find out where you are wasting time Use time management tools – Day timer or cell phone – schedule and lists Prioritize ruthlessly Set time limits for tasks Be sure your systems are organized NEVER PROCRASTINATE The work will not disappear! Timeliness Attention to each problem when it arises will prevent the need to solve more pressing problems that result from failure to address the initial problem promptly. Email Telephone S??? mail calls Handle expediently Distraction Never look at the mail or message until you plan to do something with it Delegation Delegate reasonable tasks The Big Picture Develop a conceptual understanding of space and money Zen… or something like it Develop a large tolerance for ambiguity Use your sense of humor Develop a minimal need for short term rewards Develop broad shoulders without chips Listen to others Take as many of your own telephone calls as you can Remember: Rome wasn’t built in a day, but it burned in one... It doesn’t matter what you did yesterday, it is what you are doing today or will do tomorrow that is important You can compromise without being compromising Elementary, my dear Watson… Always seek out the facts Good decisions must be factually sound Assume that what you do will have to be accounted for: Time and effort Money Space Collect data as it develops This saves much time and effort when accountability is requested: CV’s, hospitals, schools, certifying bodies, etc. “And last, but not least…” When you meet with someone and they have a long list or agenda, ask them to start at the bottom The last item is usually the most sensitive and will require the greatest amount of time When you prepare an agenda, put the most pressing item at the top-- it will saves hours of meeting time Expediency Efficiency A bird in the hand may be worth two in the bush, but... the bird may also leave droppings in your palm There are no shortcuts to success! Do not fight change-it wastes time Change is inevitable… not to mention uncomfortable…BUT it brings opportunities and risk Your job is to maximize the opportunity and minimize the risk Focus on outcomes: Publish research findings Publications are the currency of success Obtain funding for research Education Plot a course prospectively to achieve the best outcome Conceptualize problems This is the only way you can communicate both the nature of the problem and its solutions in the simplest terms-- doing so saves enormous amounts of time. You can explain something once and it will be understood Never do something twice Do it right the first time! “I took a few shortcuts laying the foundation, but I don’t think anyone will notice…” Papers Grants Letters Multitasking You can do two things at the same time Cohesiveness Constantly seek to eliminate unproductive efforts or divisive activities within the group Time is life’s most precious resource Use your time and that of others with accountability Be on time! Time is life’s most precious resource Use your time efficiently Have something to do while waiting – before appointments or between meetings or classes Deal with the cards you are dealt Trying to seek a re-deal is a waste of time and generally is not successful There is no substitute for integrity Do everything thoroughly Failure to prepare is preparing to fail Excellence is achieved by the pursuit of perfection ALL the time Good time management is rarely an accident It is the result of: high intention sincere effort much thought skillful execution When you are in a position to do so... Hire people smarter than yourself It will: 1) Save you time 2) Make you look good Do not panic when you make mistakes Good judgment comes from experience Experience come from bad judgment Do not make the same mistake twice Achieve balance between your personal and professional life Leadership Observations Leaders usually are ordinary people with extraordinary determination. Persistence in the name of a good cause usually overcomes resistance. Attributes of Leaders The ability to articulate a vision. A superior capacity to select personnel. A conceptual understanding of space and money. The courage to make unpopular decisions. The ability to create a readiness to change. Attributes of Leaders A large tolerance for ambiguity. A sense of humor. A minimal need for short term rewards. Broad shoulders without chips. The ability to listen. Personal Principles The job of a leader is to make other people’s dreams come true. Make as many of your own telephone calls as you can. Always try to do what is right. Never give up the high ground. Personal Principles Never confuse power with authority. Power is an imputed phenomenon, and power is gained by not using it. Never gripe down. If you expect excellence and convey that to the personnel, they will do more than what they themselves believed possible. Manage by Wandering Get to know everybody on the custodial staff. They will tell you what is going on. Never divulge their confidence or they will unionize and you will have no absolute source of truth. Simple Truths Praise in public and criticize in private. If you and the college director agree on everything, there is a high probability that you are both wrong. Always seek out and understand the facts. Good decisions must be factually sound. Simple Truths Stay in charge of your calendar. Never appoint a committee to recommend allocation of space. Solve problems that have solutions. Parking problems generally do not, so delegate these to someone else. Simple Truths When you join an organization as a new leader, remember your first week of meetings. Virtually everyone who has called for an appointment will cause you long term trouble. Learn Time Management Skills Never do something twice – do it right the first time. You can learn to do two things at the same time. Questions?