Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Experimenting with theming my days

I like to experiment with new ideas, often even before I think through the pros and cons. It may be spontaneous, impulsive, even compulsive. I prefer to think of it as staying fresh and remaining open to new ideas. Sometimes even when my first reaction to an idea is negative, I will give it a try.

Recently I put together an idea from two difference sources and began an experiment in which I theme my days and only work on certain things (mostly) on certain days. Pete Carroll, when he coached a USC, had themes for practices. For example:
Tell the Truth Monday, Competition Tuesday, and Turnover Wednesday.
    The second source came from Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, who also themes his days. Dorsey's themes: 
    • Monday: Management meetings and "running the company" work 
    • Tuesday: Product development
    • Wednesday: Marketing, communications, and growth
    • Thursday: Developers and partnerships
    • Friday: The company and its culture
    I like the idea of theming my days, so I started experimenting with it at the beginning of December. Here are my days:
    • Mortgage Mondays 
    • Performance Support Tuesdays
    • Leadership Wednesdays
    • Social Learning Thursdays
    • Innovation Fridays 
    Sure, there are times when I work on projects not related to the theme for the day, life happens. I am flexible. But for the most part in the past four weeks, when I schedule meetings and allot time to work on certain things, I place those time slots on my calendar on the days that match the theme. It helps me focus. I also have a print out of my themes at my desk and advertise my themes at the office, so that everyone knows my themes. My belief is that if I do this right, people will say to me, "Bill, I want to talk about social learning project, can we meet on Thursday?"

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