Monthly Archives: September 2012

I Don’t Have the Time… or Do I?

frozen yogurt

It’s 9:00pm, and the school term ends tomorrow.

The college student is frantically racing to complete a report worth 50% of his grade. It was assigned a month ago. It isn’t that he didn’t have time to work on it until now. He simply didn’t want to.

Trip to the library to gather information for his paper, or trip for frozen yogurt with friends? Frozen yogurt.

Get feedback on a draft of his paper at the college writing lab, or hang out and enjoy some draft of another kind? You know what happened.

Luckily he didn’t spill a can of coke on his expensive new laptop while finally finishing the paper minutes before it was due after a night of working on it.

I’ll protect the identity of this person, but I share the story to illustrate that people don’t manage their time in such a way as to free up time to do that which they don’t want to do in the first place. The activities that are most important to a student’s grade are often the things they least want to do.

This applies to work as well. Activities that are most important to performance outcomes are often things we least want to do. Need to call and speak with more clients and prospects to increase revenue? If it’s not something you want to do, then at 5:00pm today you’ll notice you just didn’t have time to make those extra calls.

What do you find people just can’t seem to find time for? And is it really a matter of time or of choice?

Structured Time and Workflow Management

Julie Freeman is Regional Director for Cohen Brown Management Group, Inc.

The Power of Positive Reinforcement! (What makes people smile?)

– How often do I get a compliment? –

– How often do I give a compliment? –

These two questions came to my mind after visiting one of the Regional Managers of a client.

I observed his sales meeting, and I asked him if he wanted to have my feedback. The first thing he said to me was, “Yes, please. Tell me what I did wrong.” I didn’t react to that, and I started the way I always do, by giving him a compliment based on what I had observed.

The expression on his face went from a serious, waiting-to-hear-what-went-wrong expression to a very big smile. When I asked him why he was smiling, he said, “I didn’t expect to get a compliment. I don’t get many compliments.”

Positive reinforcement is a key motivator and costs nothing to implement. But even more important, with positive reinforcement you show you care!

What makes positive reinforcement more effective? REDR:


Elaborate with



Base your compliments on facts.

Back to the questions I started with, here is my honest answer:

– How often do I get a compliment? –

– Never often enough –

– How often do I give a compliment? –

– Not yet enough, but more and more, because I care! –

What about you?

Brenda Schäfer is a Results Consultant for Cohen Brown Management Group, Inc.

Confessions of a Master Multi-Tasker

I’ve always been the consummate multi-tasker. In my school years, I watched TV or listened to music while I did my homework and talked on the phone with friends. Now, I speak with work colleagues or conduct conference calls while I write emails or finalize project details.

My husband, a writer who requires absolute mono-focus, marvels at the way my brain works. But I’ve begun to wonder whether the ability to multi-task is a false talent. After all, my husband seems to have more free time than I do, and he’s certainly more relaxed.

I’ve begun to realize that multi-tasking means I always feel rushed and my day is stressful. I find myself concerned that I’ve missed important details. I’m constantly checking and re-checking my work to fix errors that occur because I’m doing several things at once rather than focusing on the task at hand.

Ultimately, I’m getting things done and completing work, but am I delivering my best work? And is this the best way to get my work accomplished? I’m not sure. I think I may be a victim of my past multi-tasking successes. Are you?

Cynthia Leverich is Director of Global Business Development for Cohen Brown Management Group, Inc.