Thursday, October 8, 2015

Leadership Quote of the Week - George Washington

This picture was taken by my lovely wife this summer at Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington. 

 My wife provided me with this meme, after sorting through my library of quotes, and I find it interesting that it should land now. I am in the middle of the book Getting Things Done by David Allen, and coupled with the Eisenhower Decision Matrix post last week, I find myself evaluating how I am using my time. Do I have misspent time? Yes. Am I working to fix that? Absolutely!

Too often we do things that keep us busy, but don't actually provide progress toward our goals. I am guilty of this, as is anyone. As an example, I've spent hours recently moving thousands of gigabytes of data from old hard drives to a new terabyte hard drive. The data in many cases is repetative, and I am trying to clean it up so that I can have one (okay two with a mirrored cloud storage drive, but I digress) source of this information. What drove this? Honestly, I was sick of jumping from drive to drive looking for old files. Does it have an immediate impact on what I am trying to achieve today, tomorrow, or even this month. Not directly. This activity is being done because I ran across a stack of old hard drives and decided to do something with them, rather than just put them in a box and forget them.

Now, I could argue that this is a Quadrant 2 activity (and I believe it is), but there are more pertinent items I could be spending my time on. When did I realize it? When I read this quote and said "Dang!"

So where are you spending your time? Is it the best use of your time, or are you spinning your wheels? Make the decision to work toward your goals, and then focus on the activities that move the ball. Otherwise, you are only spinning your wheels killing time!

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