Dancing with Time


As a leader, strict list-making and time-scheduling are not your friends. In fact, I would argue they are enemies of productivity.


What you need instead is to have time intelligence. You need to understand how to flow through your day, always recognizing the most valuable way to invest your time at any given moment.

As situations arise, you'll quickly diagnose if it’s appropriate to reprioritize and shift your attention – or, if it’s best to stay the course.

Dancing with time requires a calm, clear head so you can absorb new information quickly and make smart assessments.”

It also requires perspective. You need to weigh not just the immediate situation, but also knowledge from the past and the long-term priorities of the company.

Work through these guidelines for time intelligence.

Rate yourself for each guideline and decide where you should change your patterns first.

To have time intelligence, you must:

  1. Know working harder isn’t necessarily more productive. The mind operates more efficiently when you take breaks frequently and give it room to be calm.

  2. Always evaluate if you are the right person to take on a task. Don’t assume responsibility without knowing why you’re the right person for the job and how it is valuable to the big picture.

  3. Be comfortable flowing from one role to the next. You may be a project lead in one moment, a product visionary in the next, and a gracious host for a client dinner later the same day.

  4. Be available for new priorities. Don’t shut yourself off from the world to focus exclusively on known opportunities. Let people visit unannounced sometimes. Allow for spontaneity in your day.

Time intelligence has everything to do with patience and fluidity.

Everyone you encounter will have their own unique rhythm with time and your ability to tune into it will greatly improve your ability to get things done.

It may take practice for you to get comfortable dancing with time, but as you do you’ll find your day has more flow and far greater efficiency.

Need to boost your time intelligence. Check out Lisa’s book Lead Advanced.

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