As a manager you probably feel that there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done.

There are so many demands on your time, so many plates to spin that you often don’t get to the important ‘leadership’ stuff that you should be doing.

In fact, you’re probably so bogged down in the detail that it’s virtually impossible to step back and see the bigger picture, let alone think strategically about what needs to be done to get your team, your department or business where it needs to be.

Where is your Focus?

In our Level 3 Leadership Skills Development course we ask managers to reflect on whether they are getting the balance right between task, management and leadership. Where are they spending most of their time?

Unsurprisingly, many say that they are stuck in task mode too much, ‘doing’ the ‘doing’ rather than focusing their time and efforts on getting the right balance between leadership and management activities.

And it doesn’t stop there. Even our more senior leaders on our Level 5 Award programme realise that they need to prioritise their time better, and develop a better work-life balance, if they are truly going to make great strides in improving their leadership abilities.

So, what can be done? After all, there is only a limited amount of time in a day. How do we make that time count?

The Art of Delegation

The first thing to do is to reflect on where you are spending your time currently.

Are you too much in task-mode? Are you the person who should be doing these tasks or can you delegate them to someone else?

The Delegate/Innovate/Reject model that we teach in our Delegation and Time Efficiency course is a great place to start. Too often we do something because we’ve always done it that way, but maybe someone else could be doing it instead thereby freeing up your time to focus on the ‘high value’ activities you should be working on.

Once you’ve identified what can be delegated, think about how you’re going to delegate this effectively.

Guess what? We have a course that can help you with that!

Delegation is a key leadership skill which, once mastered, will not only allow you to focus your attention in all the right places, but will also give your team members the ability to build their skills.

Not only does this lead to empowerment with its myriad of organisational benefits, it also creates a pipeline of future leaders within your business.

The Importance of Thinking Time

The final tip I’d like to offer is this. Carve out some ‘thinking’ time; set aside a chunk of time where you can remove yourself from the hustle and bustle and have dedicated, focused time to think about what’s next and what’s needed to help you achieve your vision.

What needs to be done and how do you plan to get there?

That may seem impossible when you’re already time-poor but think of it as an investment; an investment in you and your leadership.

If you don’t give yourself the time, and permission, to do this you will forever be on that ‘hamster wheel’.

Time to focus on the important matters, and think about what’s needed to lead your team forward, will be key in becoming a successful leader.

After all, we all have the same amount of time in a day. It’s what you do with it that matters!


Written by Siân Milne – Lead Assessor