Reading for Leading #10: Two doing lists

Two doing lists 

Reading for Leading is a weekly leadership tip shared every Monday morning as a pithy suggestion, question or reflection. You can find the whole series here.

Maybe make sure you put those lists in a safe place? Image credit:

At the end of your work week, before you put work down for the weekend, try writing two lists.

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Reading for Leading #4: Check-in with your calendar

Check-in with your calendar

Check-in with your calendar. Image credit:

When you have a quiet moment, take a seat, make yourself comfortable and make sure you’re going to be undisturbed. Then open your calendar for next week. Starting with Monday, slowly read through each day, appointment by appointment, noticing how each one makes you feel.

What are you looking forward to? What fills you with dread? Are you ever double or triple-booked? Have you allowed time for lunch? Are there days that feel about right?

Our calendars reflect how we choose to spend our days. Do you feel in control of yours or as though its scheduling is down to others? What would it take for your calendar to be an ally not an obstacle to getting your work done?

Source of inspiration: Janice Marturano’s “Finding the space to lead”

Reading for Leading #2: Going long

Going long

Next time you’re frustrated you can’t explore something in more detail, “go long”.
Image credit:

How many times in a given day or week do you and your team members think “I wish I could dive a little deeper into this topic, problem or new tool – but I just don’t have time right now.”?

Next time that happens, pick up a post-it note or scrap of paper, note down the item and then put it away somewhere. Perhaps stick the post-its onto a plain sheet of paper in the corner of your office, or post the scraps of paper into an empty tissue box on your desk – whatever works for you. You can do this electronically too, if you prefer – maybe using a Trello board and making cards for each new item that crops up. But no browsing when you post the new items! Simply file and forget.

Next, block out 90 mins in your calendar at some point within the next month. When that time arrives, empty out the box, pull down the paper covered in post-its or re-open the Trello board and pick something that calls you. Then spend the 90 mins exploring it.

You can either do this alone or as a team exercise. How does this work out?

Source of inspiration: Janice Marturano’s “Finding the space to lead”