I spoke with Matt Cox after reading this great article which
is a Summary of "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People". I know you'll
enjoy it as much as I did!
"7 Habits" Outlined
Stephen Covey is the author of numerous self-help books including the
recently released The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness. The basis for the material in this article
comes from his classic book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
If you are going to be a leader, you must manage your time efficiently. To do
this, you need to determine if you are spending time on urgent or important
activities. The chart below is a great tool to evaluate every activity
you do during the course of each day. Thinking in terms of these squares when
you reach for the phone or put off something you know is important will go a
great distance towards helping you establish your priorities and become more
effective in fulfilling the vision for your business.
Everything you do through a day is either
* Urgent and Important (Square I)
* Not Urgent and Important (Square II)
* Urgent and Not Important (Square III)
* Not Urgent and Not Important (Square IV)
Let me explain. Two weeks ago, as I started work on this article, it fit into
Square II. It was not urgent but it was important. Two hours ago, when I started
putting the final touches on this article it became urgent and important and
moved into Square I.
A phone rings. Our society has conditioned us to believe that the sound of a
ringing phone is always urgent. It might be a Square I activity or it could be a
Square III activity. Truthfully, a ringing phone could fit into any of the four
squares. Leaders must decide how that ringing phone fits within their
priorities. (Caller ID is a great help in evaluating the use of your time BEFORE
you answer your phone.)
As a leader, your time is more valuable than your money. This chart is a tool
that will help you protect and manage your time. You begin by looking at every
activity and begin evaluating it and asking "where does this activity fit within
Ideally, you want as many activities as possible within Square II. For example,
your car breaks down on the highway. It is your only means of transportation.
That means repairing it has become a Square I activity. You must cancel your
day's activities and get it fixed. However, if you make a point to do routine
repairs and maintenance on your car, then you could schedule the work to be done
when it is convenient to you and it becomes a Square II activity.
You can also apply this to your business. If you have three
Gatherings over a two day period, you can wait until a couple of hours before
the first Gathering to prepare your samples. This activity is now urgent and
important and it becomes a Square I activity.
Instead, if you prepare your samples for all of the Gatherings the day before
the first Gathering, you make it a Square II activity.
Matthew Cox lives with his wife and eight children in New Mexico where they
home school their children while teaching them about business and investments.
He is the majority owner of Megan's Pantry. For more information about this
unique home based business, go to www.meganspantry.com
. To contact Matt directly, you may email him at
Recommended Time Management Books
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness
Recommended Time Management books for Business
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Management Ideas for Moms