88. Starting and Ending Your Week

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Smooth Operator/Podcast/88. Starting and Ending Your Week

88. Starting and Ending Your Week


Habits and routines are the cornerstone to your business. And nowhere is this more clear for me than start and end of the week routines

This is where our team needs us the most. We have to be on our game to put together the pieces for them to do their jobs.

I’ve noticed that Monday morning and Friday afternoon are often the least productive for strategic work - so why not schedule out things to keep us moving forward!

Start of the week gives us momentum. Allows for Monday morning to be action-oriented towards routine tasks rather than waffling about.

Friday is shutting things down, taking stock of the week. Unpacking this now so we’re able to enjoy any time off that we have scheduled for the weekend rather than leave something unfinished on the desk.

Once you know what needs to be done on both of these, operationalize it!

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What's going on smooth operators, welcome to today's episode, happy Monday, my favorite day of the week, to be honest, Monday is where I get a ton of stuff done. And that's part of what I'm going to go into today is our start and end of the week routines and how we can use that time that is otherwise less than productive, let's just call it that. And use it as a superpower to propel us forward. So kind of one of the things that really led me down this path was, I was working with a coach who spent a long time studying very successful people. And what he found was the most successful people have habits and routines that are a cornerstone of their life. And that really got me thinking, got me thinking about what habits, what routines Do I have the routines that, you know, put me into momentum, I talked about the morning routine, you know, several weeks ago, that's one thing I do daily. And it got me thinking, as I was going through the business, and I was like man, I should really have a start of week routine. Because this is actually the start of the week. And the end of the week is where the team needs us operators the most.

You know, we have to be on our game, we have to put together the pieces for them to do their jobs. And when we put things into this, these buckets, what it does is it releases a whole lot of apprehension on the team. It provides clarity to the team. And best of all, it gets all that crap off our desk. So we can spend our time working on more strategic work, things that are going to move the company forward because the team is taken care of. We've done it. We've put together what needs to happen. Also coupled to this with the fact that let's be perfectly honest with ourselves, how many of you get into the office eight o'clock, nine o'clock in the morning whenever you start your Monday? And you're like, Whoo, yeah, let's do some like hardcore work. No, that's not how most of us do that. Most of us come in on Monday, we're kind of we're still rubbing the weekend out of our eyes. We're not really ready to activate the part of our brain. That's more strategically minded. We're just we're trying to get things done right. Same for Friday afternoon. What are you thinking about on Friday afternoon, to be honest, if you're a five day work week, a five day a week worker, you don't work weekends, what are you thinking about?

On Friday afternoon? I'm thinking to get the heck out for the weekend. I'm already on holiday man. I'm not in the office. And for me, actually, it's not Friday, it's Saturday. I'm a six day a week guy. It's just the cadence that I have.

But that afternoon on Saturday is the least productive time for strategic work. So in my mind, I think well, why not schedule out things to keep us moving forward to get us through those times. So specifically towards Monday, let's start at the beginning of the week. If we come into the office, we're action oriented, we have our tasks we have them built out we know is what know what to do. What does that do? It eliminates decision making. It eliminates apprehension. It gives us a clear roadmap on what we have to do to start the week. And for me for the way I've always structured it, I put my Monday team meeting a little bit later in the day to allow me that time to start.

So what am I doing during that time? I'm checking on projects from the previous week, going through Asana, seeing what's done, what's not done. What needs to be done in the coming week really preparing that sprint, right because I tend to work with my teams and week long sprints where I will assign what needs to be done in the coming week to the coming seven days versus what needs to be done. You know, like by Wednesday, I mean, I don't really do daily scheduling with my team rather I give them their tasks for the week. So I check on the pro Magix I see what's been done, what still needs to be done. And now I can go about assigning goals and tasks, to my team members. And I can have that all done before our team meeting. So we're able to be crystal clear about what's happening in that weekly sprint, when we go into the team meeting, I can also pull the weekly numbers, you know, I can take a look at if we had promotion over the previous week, I can look at our, our ads, relax, I can look at the p&l for the week, I can look at KPIs, I can do all these things, before I ever really get started with the week. So those are all things that we have to be doing as operators must be. My goal is always have this done before our team meeting. And when we all come together. So it's done, I can mark that off my list. Same with your end of the week, what are you doing at the end of the week, you're shutting things down, taking stock of what we've been doing that week looking at our sprint, seeing how they've been going. You want to unpack this, take the time to look at it, and know where the team is. Otherwise, I mean, if you're like me, I'm a high D personality. I'm going to be thinking about it all weekend, unless I take the time right before I turn off the computer to check on how things are going. So I'll be looking at any progress reports, I'll be looking at end of the week reports which I, my teams do a weekly report on what we've done in the previous week. And I'll go through their weekly reports, I'll write my own weekly report to wrap things up, I'll take this time to check in with the team, see if they need anything, see how things are going with them.

As I'm getting ready to check out. So all of these things are just things we have to do. Right? And what we we put it into these book ends, and we're surrounding the rest of the work we're doing in the week with these more tactical oriented just go down the checklist task. Now there's no right answer to what you have to do to start the week or close week every business is different. Every one of you has different roles within your business. Right? There's, that's just the nature of these things. But what I want you to do is just take the time to really brainstorm on what you need to do to get the week started. What are the specific tasks that if you knock out in those first two to four hours of work on your Monday, we'll clear up things for the rest of the week. What are the things you're getting asked about that that's a key indicator that you need to be doing it if team members are asking you for it. Double that to the end of the week, what are the things that always happen at the end of the week you know it you can count on it, take stock of these things that you're doing. We're gonna go over a time study here in a couple of episodes and like utilize a time study if you need to, that's actually a really good way of doing it. Because time studies accurately track what we're actually doing versus our perceptions of what we're doing. Once you have stock, operationalize this, put it into your project management tool. Start every task and every task, create a checklist for yourself, where you come in, and you're taking the guesswork out of it. That way you make sure everything gets done, you still don't have to think there's no critical thinking involved at all during this. Rather, we're just working from a sprint.

Then here's where the real final step comes into this. This idea and where you can get so much out of your team. As a leader on a team, as a leader in the organization, I see it as my responsibility to share things that are working for me. If I've unpacked something and it's giving me momentum, it's giving me the ability to get things off my desk quickly. I see it as a duty for me to share with my team members. So show them what you're doing. Show them how you're working from this checklist that you created for yourself and share with them what that allows you to do share with them how that makes you feel

as you're going through the task, how that empowers you how it makes your job and life easier. You're going to be amazed at the number people that will follow you and create their own

task lists and things that they have to go through. This is where you really start winning when you have a team of people, that is all working from habit and routine habit and routine, I'll say it again and again. And then again. Partially because I have to, it's one of the things you keep reminding yourself, to always look for those habits. Always look for places to remove the guesswork out of our lives, you'll be amazed at the number of people that follow you start doing this, and what that does for them, how they're able to be happier in their work, be more productive. And ultimately, tackle the higher level tasks with much more enthusiasm, brain power, and energy. Because they've been able to knock out their own tactical task.

So get into these habits. And I promise you, it will help if your personality is anything like mine, and it likely is if you're either CEO or the operator, we have similar personality types on the DISC assessment, I guarantee you. So give it a shot. See how it fits your work your life. And if it works, run with it, man. And enjoy the process. I hope this helps a little, just these little little things that we can add to our lives do make a big difference. And so lean into it, get it accomplished.

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