Question 23.  How do you manage your time including setting priorities, defining and delegating responsibilities?

For ten years I worked for Franklin Covey, a company that has probably had more influence on time management in the workplace than any other company.  I was trained in their time management system, and even taught it for a short period of time.   

My planner is my constant companion, and I refer to it often to keep me on track with the tasks I need to accomplish each day.  On Saturday or Sunday, I sit down for a time of reflection on my mission, values, and roles.  I then plan my week based on what I feel are the most important things that I should accomplish that week as they relate to my mission, values, and roles.  On a daily basis, I take a few minutes each morning, and plan the general tasks that need to be accomplished that day, and prioritize them.  Tasks that relate to my mission, values, and roles are usually the top priorities, but that must be balanced with the needs of people as the day progresses.   

Stephen Covey also taught very thoroughly on the subject of delegation, and levels of delegation; everything from telling someone exactly what to do and how to do it, to – on the other extreme – trusting them to simply accomplish what must be done.  First of all, a person’s trustworthiness and capabilities have to be discovered.  If they are trustworthy and capable, I am a proponent for training, defining the end result, setting the necessary parameters (things one cannot do to accomplish the end result), establishing consequence and reward, and then turning a job over to the other person for fulfillment. 

The explanation sounds complicated, but the practice of it takes place very quickly.   

I would love to show you a couple of short video clips produced by the Covey Leadership Center that illustrate these points.