Why most CEO’s never see the ROI of time tracking — they don’t finish the final step!
Just by doing the time tracking exercise, and the debrief process, you can EASILY recover an hour or more a day THIS WEEK — BUT, that doesn’t happen magically, you’ve got to have the data, you’ve got to be relentless with the value of your time, and then most importantly you’ve got to be really intentional with the actions you take with that newly recovered time otherwise it won’t result in any ROI.
Most CEO’s are disappointed when they do time tracking because they don’t follow it through with this final step and never get an ROI from the process.
After doing this work myself and working with hundreds of clients — what I know to be true is there are 3 things that will happen with that newly recovered time…so, let’s make sure we are choosing which one is most important for us personally! There’s no right or wrong — it’s just what’s right for you.
You can just let it disappear again (which is the most likely), because it’s our natural default. If you’re a doer, a high achiever, your default is going to be to take that recovered time and just fill it without thinking with more doing. But this doesn’t come from an intentional place. This will not grow the business, and becomes a cyclical trap.
You can funnel that recovered time towards a more VALUABLE work type or work activity. If we’ve trashed + trimmed to recover time, it means you’ve freed up time that we can now spend on a higher value doing or something higher value like delegating or design time. Being intentional is what’s key here. If you’re intentional and spend this recovered time in a more valuable place, it will create ROI for the business.
You can use that recovered time to do less…if you’re in need of more personal time, more free time, more family time, more time for a new business, etc — you can just take this time back for yourself. It will also likely grow the business even without DOING more because you’ll have more mental space and be more refreshed when you do spend time in the business.
The key is to not let #1 happen — the unintentional time filler — but instead intentionally choose option #2 or #3.
And how do you intentionally choose it?
Think about what your goals are for the business. Think about what you personally need. Think about what would be a more valuable use of your time in the business.
Actually BLOCK IT OFF on the calendar.
That’s right, each week you’re going to start blocking this recovered time off on your calendar and write in what you’re doing during those blocks. Whether it’s an hour or 20 hours. If you don’t protect it, it will get filled up with something less important. If you don’t block it off, you’ll forget to spend it in that intentional way, someone will pull you into a meeting or you’ll get sucked into something you’ve previously trashed…it’s not because you’re a bad person or have poor work ethic — it’s because this is what’s most natural for us and we have to build habits to keep that time moving in the right direction.
Some helpful links for you: