In our craft, there aremore than ample opportunities to occupy our time. There are so many things you CAN do. How canyouensure focus on the things that actually make the biggest impact?I suggest that often times you take on more workthan what you are able to complete. Many times there isso much work to do that nothing ever seems to get completed.

I readily remember several cases where a combination ofmyambition, auditors and loss of key team members facilitatedthis behavior in me. One in particular was a very important compliance projectdeadline thathad no tolerance for scheduleslippage. The internalauditors wanted to review the project in detail ahead of the external auditors coming to inspect the project. All whilethe solutionwas still being deployed. Lots of stress and long hours are my biggest memories of this project.While important at the time, looking back now I struggle to remember many of those details. What I do remember are theother projects that suffered neglect during this heroiceffort.

Risk assessments informyou of clear and present problems.Project deadlines are looming and startpile up. Demands from your leaderscome in unexpectedwaves. What is a strategy to positionyou for success? Consider writing down your projects. On paper. Start to document their priority, theirdeadlines along with the stakeholder expectations. Regularly and diligentlytrack yourprogress and communicate themclearly up, down and horizontallyto your peers, focusing on the opportunity cost of what is being neglected.

Many times this extra clarity will help in terms of someone deciding for you that theproject that seems so important right nowshould go on your not to do list instead. I am a BIG fan of the not to do list as it helps clearly communicate opportunity cost in terms of risk to the most important projects and initiatives. The clarity that comes from this exercise is worth far more than the effort to put it all together.

What ONE thing will you choose tofocus on when you return to work onMonday morning? What TWO things best belong on your not to do list? Whether you enter them in our comments section belowor keep them to yourself, consider adoptingthis approach while on your Monday morning commute to work.

Russell Eubanks

@russelleubanks

securityeverafteratgmaildot com

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