Forget time-management! Energy-management is the way!
Imagine your commitment if you are told you have an hour to drag a 50 pound sack of sand 5 miles. Now imagine your commitment if you have to carry your 50 pound injured child 5 miles to a hospital…Same task – different motivation!
So what’s the key difference between the two tasks? A clear sense of meaning! It’s an extraordinary difference that can easily result in 10x improvements by having more focus, more creativity, and more commitment to the challenges at hand.
As a leader, if you are able to find the overlap between your employees’ passions and your priorities, you can create circumstances that bring out the best in each person’s potential. While you will rarely have the opportunity to quickly add 10x the staff, or give your team 10x the time, as a leader you absolutely can have conversations that make the work 10x more meaningful. Achieving that boost in meaning is transformative. Timelines and deadlines will no longer be stressful.
So why aren’t most leaders doing this already? Well, it requires a kind of listening and aligning that most leaders have not been introduced to. It’s also something that must be approached person by person and can’t be done via instruction or mass communication. It is well worth the time investment and leads to better project outcomes and expands opportunities for personal growth in the team. Try it!
How? Engage with your staff and ask what they love about their job/the project at hand. If they don’t enjoy any aspect of the job/project, ask what they’d like to be doing to contribute to the business/project. Ask them why they love that aspect. Their excitement is your guide. As a leader, you’ll want to hear the factual answers, but listen especially carefully for the underlying motivators. Give them more of what they love to do, and ultimately this means less day-to-day management to attend to. In essence, you are managing the energy of your team, not their time, and it leads to greater focus, creativity, and empowerment in overcoming whatever your organization may face.
Have you asked your employees what they love about their job?