Can I be vulnerable here for a minute?

The older I get and the more responsibilities that naturally accrue, the harder it is to keep up.

If I want to spend time hanging out with my son, that comes out of work time. If I want to workout, that comes out of family time. If I want to see friends, that comes out of sleep time. I can't do them all every day, so I feel like I'm constantly balancing these competing factors for an ever-shrinking portion of available time.

Time allocation is one of the most important decisions a leader can make. As Andy Grove says in High Output Management:

“A great deal of a manager’s work has to do with allocating resources: manpower, money, and capital, but the single most important resource that we allocate from one day to the next is our own time.”

This is part of what inspired my latest post for the Status Hero blog about making time to act deliberately. As a leader, you can't only put out fires every day—you also have to set aside time for strategic planning and long-term prioritization.

Balancing the two (short-term and long-term priorities) is probably the stickiest part of leadership. I know it's the thing I've struggled with the most while building my business.

How about you? How do you manage the pull of competing priorities? Any tips or rules of thumb I can borrow?

Karl Hughes

Startups


Software Engineering


Leadership