Be More Effective – Put Some Slack in Your Schedule
19 June 2019
Have you considered scheduling some slack time into your work day? Making sure your team does likewise?
Sounds counterintuitive, doesn’t it? If your drivers can squeeze 10 deliveries into a day, why should you limit them to 7 or 8?
Well, there are good reasons to do just that. The drivers can take more care, spend time answering customers’ questions instead of tossing a couple of words at them as they rush toward their next stop. Your customers will like that. So will your drivers.
And what if one truck breaks down? The whole schedule is thrown off if there’s no flexibility.
I have learned to allow for slack time in my work day. I don’t block-schedule my time with one meeting or project right after another – I space them, with unscheduled time in between. Not long breaks, but they are definitely there. Without a little flexibility in my schedule, and my team’s, how would we deal with the inevitable problems needing immediate attention which our clients bring us?
There’s another reason, too – when we rush from one project to the next, we often blunt the edge of our focus on any project on our plates. And isn’t that just what we don’t want?
Taking some time before tackling what comes next allows you to really finish what you were working on, rather than having to come back to it later to tie up loose ends. For me, that represents satisfaction versus frustration.
Cut yourself that “slack.” Wrap up what you were doing. Breathe, center yourself. Stare into space a minute if that works for you. Then, when you are mentally free, re-focus on what comes next.
You might well find yourself eager, rather than impatient, to get working on that next task. For me, it often works that way; I think the distinction is an important one, and that “eager” produces better results than “impatient.”
How do you keep your schedule flexible?
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