5 for 5 blog – Budget Season – How are you planning your time?

12 Oct


Good morning.

Nearly every business I can imagine is, in some way shape or form, entering into 2016 budgeting season. Oh yes, it is that time of year where every manager lines up to share how they will manage costs and contribute productivity back the business (often in the form of savings) in the next year. For anyone that has been through budget season and particularly “the big budget meeting”, you know it can sometimes be a three aspirin process.

And while money comes and money goes, the challenge I am thinking about more and more this year that I would also put to you is how are you planning your 2016 time budget. Yes, time. A finite resource, time can be grossly wasted, or continually reviewed to help you and your team realize the best of each day and your potential.

“Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” -William Penn

So while the money discussions are no doubt paramount, I have been trying to lose sight on the budget help to enable my team with around time. As I have been thinking about time, here are a few of the things on my mind:

  • Plan around your purpose – Just like planning your week on Sunday nights, you can’t roll into 2016 and hope to squeeze your new priorities in. Begin the work with your team now. If conflicts arise, you can begin
  • Eliminate (at a minimum optimize) meetings – If a meeting is only reporting, consider eliminating it. And while some meetings like operations or program reviews as unavoidable, as the leader you can set the tone for what the right amount of information is, and what you would like to discuss.
  • Lean out processes – If you have a process that requires three forms to be completed only to be sent to ten reviewers, you need to simplify. The problem is that along the way, stuff happens. And when stuff happens, a corrective action is put in place. And while the intent of corrective actions is good and intended towards preventing future stuff
  • Give your team permission to prioritize – When uncertainty arises, it is natural for people to revert to what they are most comfortable with. If you are clear about your purpose and focus on minimizing roadblocks (in meetings or processes), continually reinforce the priority of the project or initiative to help and help them to own their role and keeping the process on the right track.

If this sounds like time management 101, it is probably because it largely is. But in budget time when our resources are being challenged and we have to generate more return with less people, being very focused on budgeting time will not only help in meeting some of those challenges, but also help provide clarity to your team around how to plan for what is really important in 2016.

Here are this week’s 5 for 5 articles:

Determination: The Key To Powerful, Productive Living – by Paisley Hansen – via the Holstee Blog

 8 Habits of People Who Always Have Great Ideas – by Stephanie Vozza – via Fast Company

Going to the edges – by Seth Godin – via @thisissethsblog

Quash Your Bad Habits by Knowing What Triggers Them – by Peter Bregman – via HBR

2015 National Geographic Photo Contest – by Alan Taylor – via The Atlantic

  • http://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2015/10/2015-national-geographic-photo-contest/409174/?utm_source=SFTwitter
  • SO WHAT: What is inspiring about these photos isn’t that I am an avid amateur photographer (ok, may be a little)……it is that people, just like you and me stopped to notice each of these scenes. As much as each of these talented individuals deserve to win the award for photo of the year, it is a good lesson for all of us to stop and notice the things around us each day (except tornados….do not stop and look at tornados).
  • Tags: Awesome, Inspiring

All the best, kevin