“A People Person Should Avoid Time Management”
One of the biggest pushbacks I get when it comes to the leader and time management, is those who say, “I’m a people person. I have to be available to them, and that means I can’t manage my time”.
I understand where that comes from. Productivity coaches will often suggest you need to avoid time wasters, organise your calendar and avoid interruptions. Those who call themselves a people person are worried that making such changes will mean they are less available and accessible to their people.
A Disorganised Leader has Less Time for People
I believe the opposite is true. If a leader is disorganised, if their calendar is mismanaged, then they will actually have less time for those who need them most. That’s why time management is important for a people person as it is for anyone who is task-oriented.
How we spend our time comes at a price. Every minute of mismanaged time is a minute we cannot devote to our people. If we do not organise our calendar, if we do not prioritise our task list and schedule adequate time to complete each task, if we do not ensure we have met our responsibilities and included time for adequate rest, then we are robbing others of the time we have to serve them.
If we are determined to spend as much time with our people as possible, then we need to be aware of this conundrum: working with people is not efficient. Being a people person means “wasted” time, on occasions. Being a people person means being interrupted when you are in the middle of deep work. Being a people person means sometimes having to change your plans. That’s precisely why a people person needs more time management, not less. It creates more margin to take account of the time intensity of pastoring our people.
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