12: working 3 days a week, but you need a routine
It took me sometime to work this out, but I found out that my wife was only working 3 days a week. Full time working mother, managing a complex, labour intensive part of the business as well as office manager and HR Director. How did she do it and why can’t I work 3 days a week?
I found out because one day she wasn’t in work and I called her and she said that she was taking Wednesdays and Fridays off, I suppose she could have told me at home, but when you do leave a busy life style as usual being a bloke I didn’t notice. Bit like when she’s been to the hairdressers or bought a new dress.
I had to syruptitiously find out what she was doing, that I wasn’t. And I know all you women are reading this, thinking, men can’t multi task! Well, we can, we just do it differently.
Ok, it’s all about a more complex version of my Smarter Working Week theories. The main thing is that she has a business which is fairly routine. As part of that routine her supervisor report to her on Monday, complete with their janitorial orders. This is assimulated by the warehouse manager and dispatched by stores. Monday and Tuesday evenings are the tours of the estates to make sure everyone is doing the job they’re supposed to. During the day, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday is office day for HR and office management. So the staff are organised, they know what is expected of them, hence the three day week. A good example of delegation. Whilst not complicated per se, there is routine to the cleaning business and this can be transposed elsewhere.
I for example will work from 7am every morning Monday to Friday, but organise Wednesday to finish about 3 and on Fridays about 11. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday I work to about 6 PM, but will always have a couple of evening appointments.
Routining your week helps you in a number of ways, so that tasks can be completed on time. So for example I never make appointments on a Monday or a Friday, I keep all appointments in a time frame, 30, 60, 90 minutes for example and make sure the participants know, they will also receive an agenda and a “To Do” list. This also includes clients, because they don’t want to be bored shitless either.
My Smarter Working Week presentations make the understanding of your week in clearer text.
The trick is not to overly complicate your week with tasks, concentrate on the important stuff and delegate out all the boring bits.
Richard Vanbergen : Group MD Flex-Able Group