OT does not mean success

An assumption is that people that are dedicated to the business put in all sorts of extra hours. Frankly, I have found that to be incredibly wrong. Just like many things in life we must sow and reap. There are times when the business will need the extra time. A new project that has a tight timeline. Perhaps a time when something has not went well or as planned and we must fight in the trenches for the war to turn around.

That is not always the case though. When things are going well we need to start reaping. No, that does not mean kick your feet up on the desk and read a magazine. It simply means take the time you have to recenter and strategize your next move. Then we must take action. In the book, Kata, we learn that a process is either improving or eroding, so we must take every bit of inertia we have and press forward. Also, take advantage of the “downtime” to work on a project that you want to.

I would not being giving a fair point of view if I did not state that it is ok to work eight hours a day. If you need to work ten, then do it. If you are in a hurricane at work, then twelve should not be out of the question. If you find that you are always having to work late then I suggest you take a step back and examine your situation. What non value added things are you doing? What meetings do you not need to attend? Consider asking for a close colleague’s point of view or 360 feedback. Stephen Covey also has some good material explaining how something can seem urgent but is not really important. Do not let things pile and get into a hole; be sure to involve your manager or supervisor for guidance as well.

Dig in when you need to.
Plan and strategize.
Continually validate your priorities.
Seek feedback.

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