This was not as easy a read for me. I suppose I am a victim of my generational upbringing, in that, I feel the need to be informed in an entertaining manner. This book has good information, but I had to continually check my focus. Those times when I was truly drawn in were the times when the writer was relating back to a story from his life or others and how it worked in to the particular habit he was teaching at that time. That being said, the following areas are where I believe I can use to make myself and my team better.
One of the first things to come alive to me was the picture of the young girl or old woman, depending on the viewer’s perspective. I had seen this picture several times before but because the book first presented a picture more skewed toward the younger girl than the older woman, when I looked at the “dual” picture, the young girl was all I could see. I had to look at the picture more skewed to the old woman before I could retrain my eyes to see the old woman.
It struck me that even though I knew there was an alternative view I was pushed or perhaps gently nudged into seeing it one way. I need to always listen, understand, and take note of all the facts but then seek to find every possible solution. Even ones that were not what the presenter had in mind. There could be a better way or a combination of better ways to overcome a problem or put a better process in place.
The next teaching principal to jump out at me was in habit three, Put First Things First. As I began to read and look at the four quadrants it was very easy to see where I fell. Well, if I am honest with myself I suppose I should say I walked, right into quadrant 1. My life is one big urgent, “need it now” issue after another. I am bombarded on an almost daily basis with, “I need that information by tomorrow.” Or “we are having a meeting in room such and such AND NOTHING IS WORKING!” and everything in between.
Further what rang my proverbial bell was the fact that living in this quadrant was indeed pushing me into quadrant four. Just as the book stated, I live so much of my life fighting fires, struggling to meet hard deadlines, taking care if unhappy reports as well as unhappy customers, that when there are those moments of respites’ I look for a the tranquility of the mundane. I want the quick and easy, or find myself looking over one of the guys shoulder as they have a PC torn apart because I feel if I don’t have those times I will crack when the next “quadrant one activities” hit me.
So what did I learn? Begin to work in quadrant two and quadrant one work will lessen. By taking preventive steps I can be better prepared. I know each month there will numbers those above me want to see and although I don’t always know exactly which ones or how they will want to see them I can begin to assemble them. By doing this I will no longer be overwhelmed when they tell me at 5 PM they need them by 8 AM the next day.
By building relationships I can help people...