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Most People Have Never Been Shown How To Work

Hi! This is Cyril from Work Smarter Live Better. In this segment I want to show you how completely changing your work habits can really have an impact on your life.

Me and my coach, we work with many different leaders around the world, different industries, around personal productivity, around being more efficient and effective. And we always start with a very simple sentence when we start working with them that quite shock them. And the sentence is most people have never been taught how to work. And they reply, what do you mean? Well, you go to school, you go to a university, and you’ll earn a qualification. So you become a doctor, you become an engineer, you become an accountant and one day you’ll start working.

You’re given a desk, you’re given a computer, you’re given some KPI’s, some responsibility and here you go. And the first thing we look is how people organize them self, their desk, their email and so on . And even the desk there are so many ways of organizing myself from I have nothing on my desk, to I keep a little pile here, to I got a few pile here and there, to I got a rack here to this is my desk. And when we ask people you know why they’re doing this way most people say, I don’t know but I have so many documents that I try to find a system that seems to be working for me. Is that the best way of doing it? Maybe yes maybe no. I’ve never been taught how to do this.

We ask people how they manage their email and people say it’s a nightmare. I check email first thing in the morning and only first thing in the morning in the office. Now a lot of people are checking first thing the morning when they wake up, between meetings, during meetings in the evening and again we ask them why you’re doing this way? Well, I don’t know I receive so many emails that if I don’t check all the time I’ll drown. Is that the best way of doing it? Maybe yes maybe no. I’ve never been shown how to do this.

We ask them about how they manage their time. There are so many things that we build little by little that have become a habit.

It has an impact. It has an impact on actually 4 things. A lot of people tell us they’re completely drowning. They’re drowning with work, they’re drowning with the workload. It has an impact on their stress. Some people say to me so it even stresses me in the middle of the night where I got so many things to do in the office that it keeps bursting in my mind. It has an impact on their performance, they’re really struggling. And for some people, it has an impact on their work life balance. I spoke about email how many of us check email in the evening, on the weekend, on leave.

The 3 areas that I think you really need to look at if you want to change your work habits, 3 simple things. The first area we called it declutter your world. It sounds very simple. The first thing you will have to do is to completely de-clutter your world, declutter your desk, declutter your inbox, declutter your soft file, declutter your to-do list. The first thing we do is we try to focus on the few things and eliminate the rest.

The second thing is about alignment and what we think about alignment is performance is not about the amount of thing you do. Performance is about doing the few thing that really matter. So alignment tries to align your day to day with the big priorities. You’re very clear where you know where the business is going, where you want to go. Most people know their priorities make sure that you align your day to day. You spend most of your day or a lot of portion of your day align with where your business is going.

The third advice is about personal leadership. I’m not talking about how many people you’re managing, how many people you’re leading, I’m talking about leading yourself to performance in the business but also in your personal life. So my third advice is all those principles about decluttering, about alignment they are my view as relevant in your personal life that they are in your business life. So yes, I personally do a quarterly plan about my personal life, a weekly plan of my personal life, focus on a daily basis. Very simple things need to be applied also to personal life.

So to summarize, declutter, align and you know leading your personal life. I love the quote from Aristotle “You are what you repeatedly do.” Excellence then is not an act but a habit. The habit that you have are crucial.

This is this week’s Work Smarter Live Better tip. Really look at all the simple habits and change some of your habits whatever they are.

If you like this video click on the button below. Share with me and with everyone maybe one habit that you changed that really had an impact for you. Thanks very much!

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