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Life Health > Running Your Business > Selling

Your Problem Is Not Time Management

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What You Need to Know

  • You probably get to the airport for flights on time.
  • One reason: Knowing you have a plane to catch helps you set priorities.
  • The plane gives you an excuse to say no.

A lot of the work I’ve been doing lately with advisors starts with their story that they are disorganized and have poor time management.

They want me to share tips and strategies for becoming more organized and managing their time better.

But in most cases, their problem isn’t time management at all. It’s a problem that revolves around not having a clear objective.

In his book, “Time Warrior,” my friend and colleague Steve Chandler says, “[L]et’s say your objective was to go to the airport and fly to New York City — you would have no problem managing time.”

You’re on your way out the door to the car to drive to the airport and somebody says to you, “Hey, do you have a minute? I’ve got a couple of things I want to discuss.”

You simply say, “No, I don’t. I don’t have time right now. I’m on my way to the airport.”

You are a warrior in that moment of time. You can say no. A sense of purpose makes you that way. You would get into your car and go to the airport, and maybe make an appointment to talk to that person later.

You wouldn’t have any problem whatsoever managing your time. The reason for that is you have a specific mission. You have a commitment. People who have that don’t have problems with time management because they always know what to say yes to and what to say no to.

Chandler goes on to say, “[W]ith a clear mission driving me, time management is never a problem. Even if my car breaks down, I grab a cab real fast so I can still get to the airport. Nothing gets in the way of me going to New York.”

What happens when we think we have a time management problem is that we wake up each day and dive into a list of never-ending “demands,” with no sense of purpose or mission. There’s no “trip to the airport” that day.

So, when someone asks for your time, the answer is always yes. New email… yes. Phone call… yes. Pretty soon, you’re falling behind and telling me and others that you have more to do than you can handle.

But it’s not true. You don’t have a time management problem; you have a mission problem. Whatever direction you’ve chosen to go isn’t compelling enough every day to rise to the level of that trip to New York that you wouldn’t let anything interfere with.

The solution, says Chandler, is boldness — an ability to be brave and strong in staying on mission.

If you’re feeling like time management is a big issue for you, get help with it. But consider that it may not be a time management problem at all.

Sandy SchusselSandy Schussel is a coach and practice development consultant for insurance and financial professionals. He has served as an MDRT Academy trainer, is on the faculty of the InsuranceProShop and is a preferred mentor with InsuranceWebX. He has served as the national sales training director for a broker-dealer and life insurance company. He is the author of two books, The High Diving Board, about overcoming fear and Become A Client Magnet, about attracting and keeping clients. Schussel‘s scheduling calendar is available here.




(Image: Elise Amendola/AP)


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