Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time

Woman running in a giant clockDiscovering the work of Tony Schwartz about 7 years ago via a Harvard Business Review article, Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time, had a profound impact on me and the way I think about time management.

Tony is the President and Founder of The Energy Project, a global “consulting and training company that provides organisations with a detailed roadmap for building and sustaining a fully energised workforce”. He says that they help “leaders and managers become ‘Chief Energy Officers’ by taking responsibility for mobilising, focusing, inspiring, and regularly renewing the energy of those they lead.”

While the article has been written with senior leaders in mind, it has a message of value for everyone, that when your energy levels are high, time does fly and you are very much in the pilot’s seat.

74% of Employees are Experiencing a  Personal Energy Crisis

The Energy Project’s research has revealed that 74% of employees are experiencing a personal energy crisis. That’s a lot of worn out, depleted people in our organisations. Most don’t know what to do about it. Many think it is just par for the course if you want to be successful in what you do. Schwartz does not believe this and has developed a program to take people into highly energised spaces that impact both their personal and professional lives.

One of the key points Schwartz makes is that while time is “a finite resource”, after all there is only 24 hours in a day, energy is not. You can expand, recharge, renew, develop and enhance your energy. You can learn ways to do that. You can stop doing the things that drain your energy for starters and use that time to do the energising work that empowers you. Have you noticed how high energy people never seem to be stressed or overwhelmed? They always seem to have time for what they deem to be important to them.

In Managing Your Energy, Not Your Time, Schwartz gives a number of practical examples of how he has developed these energy management skills in organisations that make it quite clear that managing your energy can really result in much higher performance.

Do The Energy Audit On Yourself.

While you may not be in a position to do his program you can start with his ENERGY AUDIT in this article – Are You Headed For An Energy Crisis? He has 16 questions that measure the energy levels in your body, your mind, your emotions and your spirit. He gives you scores for your answers and you can see how your energy management skills rate. The rest of the article will give you some ideas on what you need to be doing to improve those skills.

This article is well worthwhile taking the time to read. I also recommend you download the report done by The Energy Project in partnership with the Harvard Business Review – The Human Era @ Work.

20,000 people were surveyed about their experience in the modern workplace with the overwhelming message coming back that the “vast majority of employees feel depleted, diminished, disenfranchised, demoralised, and disengaged at work.”

I have a message that I communicate to leaders and managers in all my leadership development work: If you look after your people, they will look after your organisation. This was also the message this research sent back to organisations.

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