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Still Got a “Punching the Time Clock Mentality”? How to Move from a Time-based to a Performance-based Worker

We are living in the 21st Century but the business world is still operating like a factory in 1910. The entire reason we have the 8-hour workday (it used to be longer) is because it is based on the factory system. I call this the “punch the time-clock” structure.

Since the early days of industrialization, the business world has built itself for employees to punch that clock. It still happens even now.

But everything except the need for an 8-hour workday has changed. We blew past the Industrial Age decades ago, moved into the Information Age and even have outgrown that. We’re in the Creative Age, where information flows instantly and business is all about being creative and bringing massive value to your customers or clients. The world is now FLUID.

Shouldn’t the 21st Century Workday match our new world as well?

The main problem with traditional, 20th Century Time Management is that it operates on a flawed premise: That everyone needs to work an 8 hour day.

How untrue. We all know employees who can get tasks or jobs done in half the time. And, for every one of those types, there’s the other guy, who has to work 12 hours to finish the same workload.

Every human is different and unique so why would we EVER assume we’re all the same when it comes to TIME?

Plus, in today’s smartphone in our pocket or purse world, we’re always working because information is always flowing. Today’s issues are less about punching a time-clock and more about learning to “clock out.

If you want to move from a Time-based employee to a Performance-based worker, the first thing you need to do is jettison ALL of your old BELIEFS on the “traditional” workday. Let it go.

Now, I know where your mind instantly went.

Sounds great but I have a job that requires me to be in the office from 8-5. Do you really? Why were you hired in the first place?

I’ll tell you.

Listen close: to bring value to your company!!

You were hired and are still employed because you DO a job, you bring RESULTS, so you essentially bring “value” to your company. Trust me, stop bringing value to your job role, even if you keep working your 8-5 schedule and watch what happens. You’ll be looking for a new job faster than you can say “Industrial Age.”

This same concept applies to Business Owners and CEOs. You have a company because of your customers or clients. Your business exists because of the success of that relationship. It is not based on time. It is solely based on performance and results.

If you let go of these old beliefs and focus on Adding Value, you can then shift the requirements of your job. Obviously, if you work for yourself or have job flexibility, this is already a given. But if you work for a company that “requires” its workers to be in the office all day from 8-5, then you need a new approach. I call that this the “Bring More Value” approach.

Isn’t it time you move from a Time-Based Worker into a Performance- Based Worker?

Here are a few Actionable Suggestions that can bring you immediate results.

• For one week, quit looking for meaningless work to perform. I call this the “Fill Your Day” Disease. So, don’t go looking for work that is simply unimportant or useful.

• Talk to your Boss, if you have one, and let know you are going to “test” an experiment. You want to focus on “results” not time. Then, for one week, don’t focus on the hours you work but the work you need to perform. Record and measure how it went. Did you work more or less? You more than likely will find you were able to work less and still get your job done.

• For one week, perform the most important items or tasks on your To Do list FIRST. Knock out the critical things first. And, here’s an extra trick. Do NOT do anything this week BUT these critical items. So, that means none of the lesser or insignificant items on your list. Don’t do those. Then, after the week is over, gauge the results. Did the world end because you only focused on the big stuff? Or, did things hum? And, most importantly, how did you feel? More or less stressed?

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Pat Mixon
Pat Mixon is a Time & Efficiency Expert and the founder of Executive Training Camp, the world’s premier place for 21st Century training, strategies, and systems that allow Manager, Executives, and Business Owners to take their game to the next level. Pat’s in the business of giving people BACK THEIR TIME. Pat writes about and helps individuals learn new systems and strategies around Time Management, Delegation, Email Management, To Do Lists, Meeting Management, Making Decisions, and Managing/Working Remotely and more. He is also managing partner at The Infrastructure Company. Visit his website at: ExecTrainingCamp.com and his firm’s consulting website for finance, accounting, operations and technology at TheInfrastructureCompany.com.
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