Managing Communications–Simplification and Standards

Today’s post is from Judy Feld, MCC, ACTP Training Director, Executive and Professional Coaching; University of Texas at Dallas, School of Management.

We are faced with a mountain of multitasking opportunities–and the expectation that everyone monitors everything on an ongoing basis. If we do tune-in ceaselessly; if we allow constant interruption; if we do multiple things at once, studies show we will be less productive, less healthy, more stressed–and not so smart.

When you know what’s important to you and you know why, the choices of how you spend your time become easier. What can you delegate; what can you drop? Instead of taking a look at your list of things to do, take a look at the outcomes you desire. Then look again, and ask yourself “What do I really want?” Spend your time in those areas that will bring you the desired results–and watch yourself enjoying more what you do.

Coach’s Comment: I’d like to offer some specific tools that can reinforce balance, sanity and flow to your necessary communications. It’s all about Standards, Boundaries, and Filters. And simplifying. My favorite quoted dialog between Thoreau and Emerson:

Thoreau: “Simplify, simplify, simplify… Our life is frittered away by detail.”

Emerson: “One ‘simplify’ would have been enough.”

In honor of that quest for simplicity, I’ll limit my comments to three tips on each of the three categories of solutions. There are many more where those came from.

Standards:
1. Keep your own messages and memos short, clear, and non-redundant (one medium at a time). Edit your E-mails and correspondence.

2. Let people know your standards for communications–how, where, and with what priority and urgency they can reach you.

3. Read only the best of the many publications available, on paper and online.

Here’s to simplification!
Judy

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