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Lazy Project Manager

    September 13, 2019

We all have 24 hours in a day. How best do we use our time effectively entirely depends on us? We can choose to WASTE time or INVEST the time. Few observations basis my practical experience.

  • 20% of the clients generate 80% of revenue
  • Smart lazy person – Focus on most imp 20%
  • 80% success is showing up
  • 20% of PMs produce 80% of the results (Alpha study)
  • It pays to be lazy in a smart way though, Smart lazy folks have a real edge in a leadership role
  • Productive Laziness = Laziness + Intelligence
Whenever you find a hard job to be done, assign it to a lazy man, he is sure to find an easy way to do it Productiveness
  • The ratio of work produced in a given period of time. Person’s ability to produce a standard amount or number of products/services/end result as agreed in scope.
  • Productivity+ Intelligence Laziness: Maximum output for a given input with an eye to minimize inputs
  • Get maximum for the minimum
  • Important responsibilities contribute to the achievement of your goals.
  • Urgent responsibilities require immediate attention. These activities are often tightly linked to the accomplishment of someone else’s goal. Not dealing with these issues will cause immediate consequences.
  • Quadrant Iimportant deadlines with high urgency The first quadrant contains tasks and responsibilities that need immediate attention. For Example:
    • Crises
    • Pressing problems
    • Projects that are deadline-driven
    • Emergencies
    • Last-minute preparations
  • Quadrant IIlong-term development and strategizing The second quadrant is for items that are important without requiring immediate action. Covey points out that this quadrant should be used for long-term strategizing. For Example:
    • Planning
    • Preparing
    • Training
    • Exercise, health, and recreation
  • Quadrant IIIdistractions with high urgency The third quadrant is reserved for tasks that are urgent, without being important. Covey recommends minimizing or even eliminating these tasks as they do not contribute to your output. Delegation is also an option here. For Example:
    • Interruptions
    • Meetings
  • Quadrant IV – activities with little to no value The fourth and last quadrant focuses on tasks and responsibilities that do not yield any value—items that are unimportant and not urgent. These time wasters should be eliminated at any costs. For Example:
    • Trivia
    • Time wasters
    • Surfing the Internet without purpose
    • Watching TV for hours
The second approach of using the matrix requires a weekly assessment. You will need six blank copies of the matrix, five for each workday and one for your weekly assessment. At the end of each workday, you list all tasks and responsibilities and the amount of time spent. At the end of the week, you summarize the five days of your week in one matrix. Make sure to summarize the amount of time spent on a given task.   Few success formulae:
  • Start by thinking I am already successful
  • Non-negotiable attitude towards the hard work, dedication, and commitment
  • No Procrastination at all (Come what may)
  • Know your goals well, define them
  • Learn, unlearn and relearn
  • Use 80/20 Pareto principle towards your goals and tasks
  • Always have a plan in place, no matter how tough it is to execute. Replan, replan and replan with latest available information as you go ahead.
  • Get into the habit of doing a ‘To Do’ list for the following day before you leave work (you’ve prepared yourself mentally).
  • Create a weekly plan to give yourself:
    • enough lead-in time for major tasks
    • an overall picture, in case you need to change what you do (in response to those days when you achieve nothing!)
  • Translate this into a daily ‘To Do’ list - categorize tasks into ‘urgent’ and ‘important’
  • and then prioritize them
  • Be realistic - you can only do so much in a day
  • Review your list throughout the day
  • Ask ‘Why me? Could someone else do it?’
  • Group related activities together to concentrate your efforts
  • Work on key tasks every day - focus on pay-off instead of urgency

Saurabh Parikh

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