As a leader, one of your most valuable assets will be your time. Many businesses fail when time, as simple as that concept may seem, is not managed well. Mismanaged time can lead to wasted resources, unmet deadlines, failed relationships, and ultimately, loss of money.  

If you want to be a high-performing leader, you need to get your priorities straight. And if you’re having difficulty recognizing what they are, sit down with your team or partner to evaluate your business plans. Identify what matters most.

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you look at a long-term business plan particularly if the journey covers years. The key to achieving any goal is to break it down into smaller measurable action steps.

When you break it down in months and weeks, you’ll find that your flexibility and stress becomes manageable. Pre-week planning is an effective way for you to dedicate time for each area of your life. It brings you back to balance and helps you guard against anything falling through the cracks.

Pre-week planning can be done on the weekend and doesn’t take more than 15 to 20 minutes. It’s a small amount of time to set aside to that will ultimately save you time in the long run. To help you focus on priorities, here are five steps to follow in pre-week planning:

Step 1: Review your annual goals and vision

By doing this, you put your week in the proper perspective. When you plan your weekly goals, remember that they should all be relevant to your bigger goal. Anything that does not contribute to your vision would be a poor use of your time.

Step 2: Look ahead of your master calendar by one to three months or further

Identifying that something needs to be done in a month or two away allows you to prepare now. Some projects take longer than others and may require you to get a head start on them.

Step 3: Identify key roles in your life and set goals

You’re more than just a leader and an employee. Are you a parent, someone’s partner, or a volunteer? Determine what matters the most for each of your roles. Purposeful planning allows you to approach the week with the right attitude.

Step 4: List all your meetings, scheduled events, and deadlines for the week

Identify what needs to get done and list it down. Lists help you set priorities, coordinate similar tasks, and remember when things have to be done.

Step 5: Schedule the times during the week that you will get the items on your list done

If you have a digital planner, set alerts for all the things on your list for the week. It is also ideal that you have a calendar somewhere visible so that you don’t miss anything. Remember that once you’ve put them in your schedule, you’re already committed to accomplishing that task.

If you want to protect, conserve, and use your time in the wisest way possible, it’s crucial that you stay focused on what matters most. Eliminate distractions and avoid unnecessary meetings.

If you feel that you need more guidance on how to manage your time, I believe I can help you. If you’d like to learn more about how I have helped people transform their leadership skills through coaching techniques and highly-personalized programs, connect with me: http://meetme.so/GregNichvalodoff