Busy vs. Productive: 5 things to think about

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

The Capital Region Chamber developed BusinessU to serve as a central source to help businesses with their ongoing professional development needs. BusinessU provides a comprehensive approach to employee development and training that will continually adapt to the needs of our region.

Sharon Phillips, Founder and Chief Relationship Officer (CRO) of Said & Done Solutions LLC led a spectacular class on “Prioritizing- When Everything is a Priority.”

The class touched on points of what ownership of work/life integration and prioritizing responsibilities looks like and why it’s critical. Sharon introduced tools to help us stay focused and on track. All culminating in understanding what is necessary to sustain the path and commitment to success.

Busy vs. Productive- 5 things to think about.

Throughout the course of the class, Sharon talked about busy vs. productive and what each one looks like. Here are 5 take-a-ways from her class:

  1. Are you really too busy or is it not a priority? How often we are asked to do something, and we almost automatically respond with, “I am too busy!”  Take the time to think about what is being asked and respond accordingly. Perhaps, “I would love to do that, but I do not have time in my schedule until after this project is done.”
  2. What does busy look like? This is the million dollar question. Are you trying to do it all? Do you overthink things taking more time than needed to complete the tasks.
  3. What does productive look like? How do you manage your tasks? Do your lists have lists? Results driven productivity can show progress towards completing major goals and moving on to new projects. Check that box!
  4. Are there barriers stopping you from turning busy into productive? Do you need assistance in planning out time for projects? Are you easily knocked off track by interruptions from the office talker, excessive emails, or a jam packed, unrealistic calendar?
  5. Rank what is urgent or important and understand the difference. Time is your friend if used properly. Find a tool that works for you to rank order urgent and important matters and to-do’s. Whether it is an old fashioned paper planner or a high tech automated program, you do you and commit to using whatever it is you have selected.

Our work and our lives intertwine each and every day. This is not a dress rehearsal. Some days, work is the winner and other days, life is the winner. Balancing them is the trick. You do not have to do it alone. Use the resources available to you. Visit Business U on the Capital Region Chamber website to learn more.

Support Your WBC Heroes Hunger Team

2020 is a milestone year for Capital Region CANstruction!  CANstruction is an annual exhibit and design competition/food and fund drive that connects talented architecture, engineering, and contracting (AEC) professionals who build colossal structures out of canned food items, all of which are then used to feed our neighbors struggling with hunger and food insecurity.  Help us celebrate the 10th year of Capital Region CANstruction by supporting your Women’s Business Council Hunger Heroes team. 

We appreciate all donations, but monetary donations make a larger impact.  Every dollar donated will count as 6 pounds of food for the competition.  You can see how the WBC team is performing in the regional competition by clicking on this link: http://www.thefoodpantries.org/hunger-heroes.html.  And, you can solicit support for your team by sharing this donation page: https://thefoodpantries.z2systems.com/np/clients/thefoodpantries/donation.jsp?campaign=61.  

5 Reasons to Make a To Do List

Credit: TeroVesalainen from Pixabay 

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner Put Another Way

Funny, this is a post that contains a ‘list’ of reasons why you should make a list. The irony is not lost on me. Like so many of us, January brings feelings of renewal and focus. We want to do so many things that our ambitions can get lost in our mundane daily tasks.

Why should you make a list?

  1. Keeps us on task. When you start your day and boot up your laptop or tablet, do you know what you need to do today? Reaction is different from action. Schedule important tasks and recurring tasks in your calendar. Build that ladder of activity in your day and leave some down time for unexpected events.
  2. Prioritize. Ok so you have you list and schedule in front of you. Have you prioritized your tasks? If billing is not due to your accounting department until the last week of the month, why do it now? Timing is everything.
  3. One thing leads to another. It is like pulling a string. You sit down to write a proposal and you realize you need pricing from a supplier….add that to do item now. You are creating a thank you campaign for your clients and need to purchase coffee shop gift cards…add this action in advance so you can finish that project in one swoop. Check!
  4. Allows the opportunity to punt. No time right now? No problem. Move that to do item to another day, week, or month. You are the boss of your time.
  5. Feeling of accomplishment when completed. At the end of the day when you look at your list and see all that completed activity, you will feel spectacular. The sense of accomplishment is rewarding, embrace it.

Good day or bad day?

Please don’t be discouraged if your list is still fairly large at the end of the day. Some projects take longer and that is ok. Some days you will finish the entire list and you can head out to the gym and take a spin class. Either way, you are better off and so if your business if you make a list.

Add this to your list.

Spend some time with your fellow list builders and come to the WBC luncheon, Your Voice, Your Values, Your Vocation…Doing you authentically; while explaining you succinctly. This marvelous event will be held on January 28th at Albany Marriott Hotel. Click here to register or for more information, email Marna Redding at mredding@capitalregionchamber.com .

WBC Member Spotlight

Last week we mentioned that the Women in Business Wednesday’s would highlight our own WBC members in a Member Spotlight format.

To further promote women who are leading the way in our community, we are featuring Chamber member businesses who are owned by women.

To help us create the blog post, please answer the questions below and send 1-2 photos that we can include with the spotlight. Please send the completed questions and photos to Kate Renna and Emily Dessingue or simply email them to have them send you a pre-printed form.

When you have 30 minutes of free time, how do you pass the time?

What do you love most about what you do?

What would you most like to tell yourself at age 13?

What is the best advice you have ever received?

Women in Business Wednesdays 2020

Over the past few years, every Wednesday we have enjoyed the many posts that our guest bloggers have provided with links to articles that have been relevant, timely and insightful. In 2020, we are going to shift Women in Business Wednesdays to focus on and highlight our members. Please stay tuned for what is to come and details on how to be featured.

For now, I will leave you with a last look at 2019 and the progress women have made according to an annual study conducted by McKinsey and Company in partnership with LeanIn.Org. Below is an infographic from the article for a quick look and click here to read the full article.

Look around your office and change 5 things.

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

Holiday time, especially the new year, presents us all with a chance to change, renew, and start over. Not necessarily because we made mistakes or failed, but because we want to be better, do better, and implement with a fresh start on January 1st.

Here are 5 things you can think about and perhaps change in your office. I’ll use myself as an example and hope this speaks to you to look around your office and conceivably make a change.

Remove the treat jar.

I have always had candy in my office. I convinced myself I maintained this magnificent stash for ‘visitors’ yet on too many late-night projects, the candy became my dinner. This year I am swapping out the candy for some healthier options such as nuts, low-fat granola bars, and fruit. Hey, I am no saint…I still keep peanut M&M’s in the bottom drawer!

Add a plant or a fish or two.

Plants can create a feeling of wellness and health. They are beautiful to look at and can really relax a seemingly stuffy office. Just remember to water them!

Fish require a little more care. I had four fish, Shakespeare, Hamlet, Horatio and Yorick. Alas, only Shakespeare survived slightly cloudy water and an odd feeding schedule. I recently lost poor Shakespeare…  and was truly saddened.

Change the location or direction of your desk.

This is a game-changer. I promise it makes a difference. If space does not allow, change up the location of your desk lamp or printer. Mix it up a bit.

Open for a chat!

If you are in an office, do you always work with the door closed and lights low? If you have direct reports, do they shy from coming in to actually see you and chat? Open up that door and raise the blinds! You will be surprised by what you learn about people when you actually sit face to face to face with them.

Clean up. No really, clean it.

Spring cleaning is great, but the end of year cleaning is healing.

  • Saving old daily planners from 2010? Get rid of them.
  • Old shoes under the desk covered in dust? Donate them.
  • Awards or plaques sitting in a pile? Hang them.
  • Thank you for notes that need to be sent? Write to them.

Make a change and Happy Holidays from Put Another Way and the Women’s Business Council.

E-mail Marna Redding or call 518.431.1421 to learn more!

1 in 26 Faces of Epilepsy

From the desk of Katelyn Markellos Marketing, Communications and Special Events Coordinator, Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern New York, Inc.

Meet Jeffrey Burke

Just before his 16th birthday, Jeffrey experienced his first grand mal seizure which left him unconscious and needing to be airlifted to Albany Medical Center. After several tests, he was diagnosed with a generalized seizure disorder. Since his diagnosis, Jeffrey has found a solution to control his seizures by taking a medication called Keppra twice a day. He also makes sure to get plenty of rest, eat healthy, and be physically active.

Along with medication, he has a wonderful and stable support system of family and friends. He can relax knowing his friends lookout for him when they are with him. He isn’t afraid to face fears, instead of hiding from them, he takes them head-on!

Jeffrey hopes to enroll in college and is considering becoming a physical education teacher. Jeffrey will be 10 months seizure-free in December!

Don’t forget to vote for the WBC 2019 ANP with Capital Region Gives! You can vote HERE!