Literature Study GuidesThe 7 Habits Of Highly Effective PeopleAppendix B A Quadrant Ii Day At The Office Summary

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People | Study Guide

Stephen Covey

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People | Appendix B: A Quadrant II Day at the Office | Summary


Key Takeaways

  • Covey sets forth a hypothetical to-do list for a manager's workday. The list names each activity to be accomplished, as well as an estimate of how long it will take.
  • People who follow third-generation time management rules would prioritize each task in order of urgency and importance, then tackle the most urgent or important item first, followed by the next most important item on the list. Anything uncompleted at the end of the day they leave for tomorrow.
  • While effective for completing urgent and important tasks, third-generation time management doesn't allow managers the time and freedom to lead their teams. Instead of planning ways to improve the organization's future, they are stuck putting out metaphorical fires in the present.
  • Fourth-generation time management addresses these problems. It focuses on Quadrant II, the things that are important but not urgent.
  • Covey says the manager in this hypothetical situation should delegate several of the tasks on the to-do list to a secretary or other team members, thus allowing the manager time to work on "big picture" tasks, like preparing for future meetings and building relationships with superiors.
  • Covey also suggests the manager take the lead in making stakeholder meetings more efficient and productive. By proactively working within the manager's own Circle of Influence—in this case, the company's board of directors—the manager can positively impact the rest of the team.
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