Going Backwards To Go Forward
By Gerald Sherman
This past Sunday my wife and I were invited to a farewell BBQ for Captain Christopher, (last name withheld), a career officer in the United States Marine Corps, who is leaving on another overseas assignment.
The previous week we met for lunch in Boca and I said, “I don’t want to take up too much of your time because you have so many other things to do.” Chris looked me in the eye and said, “Unk Jerry, I have the whole afternoon blocked out for you.” (He jokingly calls me Unk Jerry although we are not related). He explained to me that his training included how to track your time. That interested me as I sometimes feel that I didn’t accomplish everything I thought I would for the day. Although I try to plan my day around business appointments I make, at times I don’t get other things done. There must be a way of including other tasks that I want to accomplish.
It is interesting to note that a company like Weight Watchers does something very similar in the way they have you track your allotted points for the day. For example, if you have 29 food points for the day, you deduct whatever you consume from the 29. If your breakfast was 5 points then you have 24 left to work with and you keep deducting until you reach 0 points. They probably have found that working backwards helps you go forward towards achieving your goal.
It seems that going backwards to go forward could work in a daily business schedule too. For example, if you have a 2 p.m. appointment and you know that you need to have your lunch first, subtract your travel time and lunch time from the 2:p.m. appointment to assure that you are there on time.
By planning your schedule this way you can make sure that you get everything important that you planned for the day done. You will also get a realistic picture of whether you planned too much for the day and are unable to meet your commitments. Nothing can upset a client or prospective client more than being late or not being able to keep the appointment. So if you want to go forward with your clients track your time backgrounds.