According to the Harvard Business Review, 96 % of leaders say that lack of time is the biggest hurdle towards being more strategic.
Can you relate?
While, I’m sure you can, being strategic is a crucial competency for leaders. This is especially true as you move into a senior leadership role within your organization.
So, how can you carve out time to be strategic when you are so busy?
I had this exact conversation with a client earlier this week.
He set a goal this year to be more strategic, but he is really struggling to make progress towards this goal.
So, we created a plan.
I thought this plan might interest you, so I’ll share it with you below.
In the plan, we focused on two practical ways to be more strategic.
- Remove the biggest time waster in your schedule. This is a short-term goal. It is a strategy that can be applied almost immediately. For my client, his biggest time waster is meetings. So, he is going to shorten his meetings, add an agenda to his meetings and say “no” to any meetings that his team can attend on his behalf. This will automatically add 1-2 hours a week to his schedule which will be blocked off in his calendar as “strategic planning” time.
- Develop your team to take key tasks off your plate. This is a long-term goal. It will take at least six to twelve months to achieve. To accomplish this strategy, my client made a list of all the tasks that need to be removed from his to-do list. He then identified who he would like to delegate these tasks to and how he needs to develop them to be prepared to take on these new responsibilities.
You will notice that even the way we created this plan is strategic.
We looked at the problem.
We brainstormed solutions.
We considered the impact on key-stakeholders in our plan.
We thought about the broader requirements of the business.
We considered realistic time frames.
We created a plan that has both short-term and long-term goals.
We leveraged a plan that is SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, timebound).
Now more than ever, organizations need leaders who can navigate change and provide strategic directions for their teams.
What can you do to carve out time to be more strategic?