One of the marks of a successful business is when company leaders in the C-suite, along with all other employees, are making great strides in high-volume productivity.
It sounds ideal: Mountains of intense work are being completed on or ahead of deadline, meetings are going smoothly and according to schedule, and clients or customers seem to be very happy that their needs are being met or exceeded. Not a moment is wasted during the work day, with tasks carefully scheduled down to the minute.
What happens to us — as leaders in professional services, technology, financial services, or other industries — when we’re working so hard and adhering to such strict schedules that we don’t take any time to reflect, ponder, think, and grow our ideas?
While meeting deadlines at blistering paces can do wonders for the rewards and satisfaction that come along with skyrocketing productivity, it isn’t always sustainable in the long run. Actually, it can truly stifle us. When we’re far too busy to take adequate time to think, learn, and imagine, how can we continue to innovate?
This is explored further in a piece by Peter Bregman in Forbes. He argues that too much productivity is actually extremely problematic for long-term progress, and we should take time often to fit in whatever “thinking time” activity helps us best develop new ideas.
Senior executive leadership needs to understand the difference between being “busy” and being “productive.” Company culture starts at the top, and stress or an improperly aligned work-life balance will trickle down. Finding C-suite executives that match and wholly believe in a healthy company culture are the right leaders you need to recruit. They can only be found through a comprehensive candidate assessment process based on competencies you value in a leader.
After all, you can’t expect a company to have a healthy balance if their leadership doesn’t live it themselves.