Tips For Humans #3 — Maker vs. Manager Time
Years ago, I’d often come to the office around 7am to prep for an early meeting. There was always one person there before me: Tom
I'd stumble in bleary-eyed to see Tom in his corner office, fresh and cranking away on work. One morning I poked my head in: “Tom, do you ever leave the office? Do you ever sleep?” I expected to hear something about ‘the hustle.’
But his answer surprised me.
“I do MY JOB in the first two hours of each day. When the team arrives, I switch to helping them do THEIR JOBS.”
This illustrated two important points that can help anyone who works on a team.
(1) Rather than getting frustrated with constant interruptions, Tom realized they were a crucial part of his job and adjusted his schedule to give others enough attention.
(2) He used Time Blocks, scheduling a couple hours of uninterrupted Deep Work ("Maker Time") in the morning, and the rest of the work day for meetings and people management ("Manager Time").
By being realistic with the *types* of brainpower required for different tasks, and by allocated enough bandwidth to handle them, Tom was able to work at his highest level.