Time is money. You've heard that expression a thousand times or more. And as many times as you've heard it, you have universally ignored it.
Every year I get hundreds of requests for a course in time management. And every year I give my answer: Why are you asking me what to do with your time? Don't you know what to do?
Is it time management or wasted time?
Is it time management or procrastination?
Is it time management or lack of productivity?
Is it time management or lack of achievement?
Is it time management or poor time choices?
You tell me, I'm concentrating on my time challenges, not yours.
I am writing a book on the subject of time management soon to be titled “You Already Know What to Do, You're Just Not Doing It.”
I love the expressions that have been created over the years:
• Just in time.
• Save time.
• No time like the present.
• There was a time when.
• Time commitment.
• Time management.
• Time bomb.
And a ton of other irrelevant jargon.
So if time is money, as suggested earlier, what are you doing with yours? Are you spending it or investing it? And how are your time investments working for you?
Are you frustrated because there are not enough hours in the day? I am. Groucho Marx had it right. He wanted a 36-hour day. That way you could work 24 hours, and still get a good night's sleep.
Spending time or investing time is a choice. Here are some examples of choices. See which ones apply to you.
• Spend time watching TV — invest time reading a book
• Spend time drinking in a bar — invest time writing or preparing for a sales call
• Spend time playing a video game — invest time learning social selling
• Spend time watching a movie — invest time talking to your kids
Investing time with your family pays the best dividend: love.
Is it time management? No, it's actually time allocation. It's how you choose to use your time right now. How are you spending or investing your 16 to 18 hours a day?
• Email. How many a day? 10? 100? More?
• Texting. The instant communication mode, instant and unavoidable.
• Smartphone. People (not you of course) are addicted. Can't sit down without looking at it and responding to it. You spend hours on your mobile device with text, search, email, apps and games, and then you start talking.
"I don't spend that much time on the phone." Really? An hour and a half a day is 2,700 minutes a month, is almost two full 24-hour days a month. And most people spend more. I'm not saying it's all bad time, I am saying it's 90 hours — you measure its value.
And new time-pulls are creating re-allocations of your time. The biggest time-pulls being social media. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube demand business and personal attention, and more time allocation — time you and I never had to allocate before. Add blogs, e-zines, emails and websites, and you have hundreds of new hours demanding — no, commanding — both attention and time. Your time. My time.
Want to add your new allocation of time? Three hours a day (minimum for all the items above) is 15 hours a week, if you play only five days. Doubtful. That's 780 hours a year. My number would be closer to 1,000. How about you?
You're probably 1,000 hours just on your smartphone.
Here's the opportunity, or the rub, depending on how you look at it. In all this allocation or re-allocation of time, make certain you're addressing the real goals of the time investment process. Here's what you must be concentrating on achieving during these allocated hours:
• Making connections
• Helping customers
• Providing value
• Service in an instant
• Building relationships
• Earning referrals
• Building a social selling platform
• Writing and blogging
• Following up with hot accounts
• And, oh yes, making sales
Cold calling? You have no time to waste on hit or miss — 99.9 percent miss. Referrals are 75 percent hit. Start there. LinkedIn is a professional connecting platform. Start there.
You might want to allocate some hours for reading, family and travel. I do.
Want my best time allocation secret? Go to www.gitomer.com and enter ALLOCATION in the GitBit box.
Gitomer is the author of the “21.5 Unbreakable Laws of Selling.” Details are at www.gitomer.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.