One Discipline Nearly All Great Leaders Exercise

By January 2, 2018General News

As we look towards planning for 2018, I encourage you to begin doing what we call in the EOSÒ world, a Clarity Break.  I have heard many times that Great leaders have a habit of taking quiet thinking time. That means escaping the office on a weekly basis for an hour or so – WITHOUT CELL PHONE & COMPUTER (Egads – that is scary!).

The Following is from “How to Be a Great Boss Toolkit”

One discipline that all great leaders have in common is that they take time on a regular basis to rise above the everyday demands of their jobs to reflect and think from the thirty- thousand-foot level.

To stay sharp, confident, and at your best for your people, you must take Clarity Breaks. By definition, a Clarity Break is time you schedule away from the office, out of the daily grind of running the department, to think and to work on your business, department, or self.

Stepping back to think will create clarity for you and restore your confidence. This is important because the normal course of day-to-day business pulls you deeper and deeper into the minutiae of your work.

As a result, you sometimes can’t see the forest for the trees. You start to feel overwhelmed and you become short with your people.

Make the time to save time.

Therefore, at intervals, you must elevate yourself above the day-to-day activities “in” the business so you can work “on” the business. Schedule an appointment with yourself. Put 
it down on your calendar. If you don’t schedule the time, it will never magically happen. At first you may be concerned about when you’ll find the time. The irony is, you’ll actually save time by taking Clarity Breaks. When you are clear about your bigger objectives, you gain the confidence to simplify procedures and create efficiencies.

Minimize distractions and allow yourself to just think.

Use this scheduled break wisely, though. This is not time to catch up on email or complete a to-do list. It’s time to think, to see things clearly and restore your confidence.

Faced with a blank legal pad or journal, with no agenda, no interruptions or distractions, you’ll be challenged at first to actually think.

Use the Clarity Break Questions below to get started

Clarity Break Questions

Is the Vision and Plan for the business/ department on track?

What is the number one goal?

Am I focusing on the most important things?

Do I have the Right People in the Right Seats to grow?

What is the one “people move” that I must make this quarter?

How strong is my bench?

If I lose a key player, do I have someone ready to fill the seat?

Are my processes working well?

What seems overly complicated that must be simplified?

Do I understand what my direct reports truly love to do and are great at doing?

Am I leveraging their strengths?

What can I delegate to others in order to use my time more effectively?

What can we do to be more proactive versus being reactive?

What can I do to improve communication?

What’s my top priority this week? This month?