getting a lot of benefit from a little time…

Santa Monica mural

I have finished Great by Choice by Jim Collins this week, and learned so much from the book!  The importance of optimizing our choices, being emotionally intelligent, and honoring what we can learn from others are the take-aways I wrote down most frequently while reading.

One of the ways this book has affected me is that it caused me to really reflect on the ways I spend my time outside of the office (learning about 10xers got me thinking I should be doing more!).  I realized that I have missed out on some opportunities for enhancing my skills, knowledge, and network due to these (not ideal) choices.  It can seem like we need to spend a great deal of time before or after work to accomplish goals for our self-development (i.e., professional development we do on our own time), but I learned that this isn’t so.  I just jumped in and started adding a few things here or there these last several weeks.  Upon reflection, I realized that I have benefited a great deal already, even with a small amount of time investment so far.

I have started:

1.  Making “me” time each day before work a priority.  Setting aside time to put ourselves as a priority is not something we think we can do.  I think that the practice of doing so helps develop us, helps us reflect on our personal and professional goals, and improves our interactions with others in and out of the office.

2.  Spending an hour over the weekend applying a book or some of the podcasts/blogs I follow to my current professional skill development.  Not only has this hour increase my knowledge, but it has helped me get involved in some professional organizations (both locally and virtually), and I feel like it is enhancing my network.

This has been a minimal time investment, but has helped me get focused and prioritize.  I suggest that you try something this week, like spending  5-minutes each morning reading a few pages from a book that is gathering dust since buying it at the SHRM Conference, or devote 30-minutes during your commute to a podcast.  Here are some ideas that may become ways you enjoy spending your time before getting to the office each day.
The Accidental Creative:  This podcast tends to be under 15 minutes is extremely interesting and idea-generating.  I haven’t read the book yet but it is in my queue.
Human Capital Institute:  These podcasts are always enlightening and have given me several ideas to apply in the office.
Manager Tools:  I have posted on this podcast before and noticed this week there is some information on how to better work with HR.  I will be listening (and probably posting about this one) soon.
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