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How much does the first hour of every day matter? How much performance management
ROI value is there? A lot! It can be the hour you see everything clearly, get one real thing
done & focus on how effective the rest of your day will be.
Here are 3 tips from David Karp (Tumblr), Tony Robbins & career writer Brian Tracy, to maximize your first hour of the workday. All are a little different so you can choose one that suits you and helps you be more productive:
1) Don’t Check Your Email for the First Hour. Seriously.
Tumblr founder David Karp will “try hard” not to check his email until 9:30am,
according to an Inc. profile of him. “Reading e-mails at home never feels good or
productive,” Karp said. “If something urgently needs my attention, someone will call or
text me.” Most of us have jobs that don’t require constant on-call awareness can trade email for organization and single-focus work. It feels good leaving the office with the
feeling that, even on the most over-booked days, you got at least one real thing done in
the morning. As an “Achiever” this “getting valuable stuff done” is highly motivating for
me and makes me more productive as a manager and leader.
2) Gain Awareness, Be Grateful – I believe this works, and here’s a great reminder to
be more disciplined applying this tip. While at first it seems “fluffy” it can define your
leadership strength & resilience. Tony Robbins, the self-help guru suggests setting at
least “Fifteen Minutes to Fulfillment.” Part of it involves light exercise, part of it involves
motivational incantations, but the most accessible piece involves thinking of everything
you’re grateful for: in yourself, among your family and friends, in your career, and the
like. After that, visualize “everything you want in your life as if you had it today.”
Robbins offers the “Hour of Power” segment of his Ultimate Edge series as a free audio
stream (here’s the direct MP3 download).
3) Do the tough stuff first
Brian Tracy’s classic time management book Eat That Frog gets its title from a Mark
Twain saying that, if you eat a live frog first thing in the morning, you’ve got it behind
you for the rest of the day, and nothing else looks so bad. Combine that with the concept
of getting one thing done before you wade into email, and you’ve got a day-to-day
system in place. One benefit to tackling that tough stuff in the morning is that you have clarity. You also gain a great sense of achievement that powers your day! It makes you more productive & a stronger leader as you are thinking clearly.
Jayne Jenkins CEO www.churchillleadershipgroup.com