My latest post at HBR: The Most Productive People Know Who to Ignore
A coaching client of mine is managing partner at a very large law firm, and one of the issues we’ve been working on is how to cope more effectively with the intense demands on his time—clients who expect him to be available, firm partners and other employees who want him to address their concerns and resolve disputes, an inbox overflowing with messages from these same (and still other!) people, and an endless to-do list. Compounding this challenge, of course, is the importance of making time for loved one and friends, exercise, and other personal needs.
When faced with potentially overwhelming demands on our time, we’re often advised to “Prioritize!” as if that’s some sort of spell that will magically solve the problem. But what I’ve learned in the process of helping people cope with and manage their workflow is that prioritizing accomplishes relatively little, in part because it’s so easy to do... Read the rest at HBR.