Fast Company recently posted an article that created a mini online “buzz” because of its practical relevance.
The piece was simply titled “What Successful People Do the First Hour of Their Work Day” and outlined 6 activities that can help maximize your day.
In response to this outstanding post I believe there are also a set of 5 practices that leaders should anchor into the last hour of every work day.
1. Review the day’s accomplishments
Your work day was not simply 8 hours of clock-punching. Rather, it was an investment of your most precious leadership commodity; your time.
How well did you expend it? Did you accomplish what you set out to do? Take time to evaluate. Find ways to reward yourself for accomplishing an important goal, and determine why other goals were not met.
2. Prioritize tomorrow’s goals
Don’t leave the office until you have a game plan set for the following day. Determine what a successful tomorrow looks like and what will be required to pull it off.
This is not a “to-do list”. It’s a leadership action plan designed to maximize results.
3. Make someone’s day
The day wasn’t all about you.
Carve intentionality into the final hour of your day to connect with members of your team, and demonstrate the level of awareness required to engage in a meaningful conversation about their day.
A little of this goes a long way.
4. Achieve “inbox zero”
In an earlier post I outlined practical steps to ensure your email inbox is empty by day’s end.
I won’t re-preach that message here, except to say don’t leave the office until the inbox is empty. Ever.
5. Honour your stakeholders
Take 10 minutes to connect with a handful of stakeholders; board members, donors, key influencers, etc. Fire off a quick email, pop a thank-you note in the mail, send out a word of encouragement.
Make this a daily discipline at day’s end you’ll reap long-term rewards.
By bookending your day with Fast Company’s list for the first hour of your day, accompanied by these suggestions for the last hour of your day, the time you have in between could achieve far more than you ever imagined.
What strategies are on your “must do” list to start and end each day?