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Time Management Or Time Agility: How To Find The Flow

Oleh 14 Juni 2024 Whitepapers

Have you ever found yourself in a professional race, navigating through your days and sometimes feeling like you're going in circles? We all have those moments. Drivers who race professionally can offer us some valuable lessons for dealing with these common time dilemmas.

Professional drivers have a unique relationship with time. In racing, where every second counts, they must remain intensely focused on the present moment and immediate challenges, taking each turn speedily and precisely. They live by the clock.

Yet, they also remain forward-thinking, considering variables like fuel efficiency and weather. Since they can never be sure of the track conditions ahead, winning drivers adopt a flexible and adaptable approach to time. They always remain alert to changing circumstances and stay ready to modify plans and create new strategies on the go.

Thus, the auto race driver’s time orientation is not just a methodical process but a dynamic interplay of precision, immediacy, strategic foresight, creativity, and adaptability.

Likewise, purpose-driven leadership requires time agility. The key is to carefully manage time for immediate demands while also holding space for creatively shaping the future.

Focus on the Immediate and Create the Future

Time is multidimensional. It is more than a challenge to manage or a resource to employ. Time is also the dynamic backdrop that shapes your life and work.

Tackling Today While Creating Tomorrow

Focusing on immediate tasks without sacrificing your purposeful future requires balancing how you structure your time with intention and foresight.

Such leadership requires a deep connection with your values, a clear vision, and the ability to inspire and engage others short and long term. To successfully address complex problems while achieving short-term objectives, you must be committed, patient, and willing to persevere.

While you may be able to manage your time carefully by applying standard tactics to achieve more mundane daily objectives, purpose-related dilemmas will require a different perspective. These problems are usually complex and evolving continuously. You will need fresh thinking to find solutions.

Thus your success as a purpose-driven leader requires you to balance time management to meet short-term objectives with some suspension of time pressures while you and your team pursue your longer-term purpose creatively.

Viewing Time as a Challenge to Manage

Time often appears to be finite when you are managing it to address immediate challenges. Most likely you focus on efficiency, productivity, and deadlines. Your skills and techniques for scheduling, goal setting, and minimizing distractions add to your success.

Because you need control over your time, you plan your days to maximize productivity and meet deadlines. You assume that every minute counts.

Time management skills for meeting immediate demands are essential for surviving in the workplace. However, if you care about sustained impact as well as the quick wins, you must also adopt a longer-term perspective.

Approaching Time as a Resource to Employ

You become more strategic by adopting the view that time is a resource to invest in achieiving your goals. By embracing this perspective, you will prioritize how to allocate time most effectively to achieve both short-term and longer-term outcomes.

For example, you might set deadlines for immediate tasks while also creating space for innovation. This approach allows you to invest time in creative thinking and experimentation without sacrificing productivity for the short term.

Understanding Time as an Intangible Condition

Most workplaces require leaders to tackle time as a challenge to manage and a resource to invest. However, since you are a purpose-driven leader, you will benefit from also understanding time as an intangible presence that provides the backdrop to your life and work. This perspective envisions time as invisible, ever-present, and fluid.

Complex challenges that are connected with a purpose require creative solutions. By periodically embracing a more holistic and flexible approach to time, you can establish the environment for suspending the more familiar focus on urgent issues and deadlines, allowing unforced exploration and creativity.

Otto Scharmer, MIT senior lecturer and author, offers the term “holding the space” to describe how leaders create the right conditions for the emergence of new ideas.

He says leaders must enable cultures that support individuals in connecting deeply with themselves and others while letting go of old patterns and assumptions.

By creating environments where inspired people can approach their work with open minds and time to reflect and create, you are enabling individuals and groups to transition from past habits to future potential, according to Scharmer.

Balancing Frameworks for Time

How you balance time will have a significant impact on your results as a leader.

By now, you fully appreciate the complexity of balancing time perspectives. Your task is not to choose one time orientation over another. Rather you must embrace all of these time frameworks.

You undoubtedly experience daily pressures in your work. Therefore your challenge is to effectively manage time and employ it as a resource for completing your day-to-day tasks while reserving space for greater time fluidity. It is through these periods of uncluttered thinking and imagining that creative ideas emerge.

Here are some tips for balancing your approaches to dealing with time:

Adopt a Dual Framework

Embrace time not only as a finite resource but also as a fluid backdrop for your work. Carry out tasks that require your immdiate attention efficiently. In addition, allow space for strategic and emergent long-term growth and creativity.

Action: Set clear priorities and deadlines for short-term tasks while allocating time regularly for reflection and innovation.

Cultivate Flexibility and Adaptability

Recognizing time as fluid means adapting to changing circumstances and being open to revising plans when necessary.

Action: Encourage a culture that embraces change and is responsive to new information. Foster an environment where teams can pivot quickly without losing sight of long-term goals.

Balance Structure with Creativity

Support cultures where innovation can thrive while you also acknowledge the benefits of discipline and organization.

Action: Implement practices like "innovation hours" or "think tanks" where teams can focus on creative problem-solving without the pressure of immediate deliverables.

Promote Mindfulness and Presence

Foster mindfulness practices that help individuals and teams stay present and fully engaged with their current tasks while remaining open to emerging opportunities.

Action: Incorporate mindfulness exercises, regular check-ins, and reflective practices into the work routine to help maintain focus and openness.

Integrate Long-Term Vision with Immediate Actions

Connect daily actions to a larger vision, ensuring immediate efforts contribute to long-term goals. And hold the space for free-flowing, open-minded explorations of ideas.

Action: Regularly communicate the long-term vision and strategic objectives to the team. Show how their current work fits into the broader mission and purpose. And promote the benefit of standing back from the day-to-day to allow new ideas and solutions to emerge as the future unfolds.


Like auto race drivers, you must address immediate concerns by focusing on the finish line while also staying alert to unpredictable and challenging conditions ahead.

You must balance the urgency of present demands with the patience and strategic foresight you need to achieve sustainable success.

You can navigate the complexities of your roles by manging time as a valuable resource for achieving short-term objectives while simultaneously holding space for innovation and creative, long-term thinking. No matter how much time pressure you eperience, remember that time will always remain that fluid backdrop for your life and work.


A version of this article appeared on forbes.com, posted on May 24, 2024

EXPERD, Human Resources Consultant, Jakarta – Indonesia


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