What the survey I conducted confirmed for me is a hunch I have had that people need a lot more help in implementing their time management improvements.
Only 5% said No to the question: “If you had the right support system, could you make any change you wanted to your time management system?”
Along with the other survey results I shared earlier, it’s clear to me that people are disheartened at their inability to implement the good ideas they find on their own, or learn in training courses.
What people are looking for is a way to take even the most innocuous tip that they find, and reliably put it into play in their lives. While the tip/idea might have some merit, it’s only those who are able to test them with actual implementation that are likely to be satisfied.
An important part of a good support system would be one that tells them the truth about the size of the challenge they have undertaken. It would radically increase the odds that they could accomplish their goal.
Also, one of the other findings from the survey is that people are more interested in upgrades, than in entirely new systems.
54% said that their systems were in need of continuous improvement, and 20% said that they were interested in small improvements. Furthermore, only 16% said that they were not interested in upgrading their time management system at this point in time.
It made me think that people want a way to preserve the progress they have made with their current time management systems, without a need to throw away the practices and habits they are using. In other words, they don’t want to hear that their current system is crap, and that they need to chuck it all away in order to make an improvement.
This implies that they need a way to understand their current system, to see where it’s working and where it’s not, so that they can make the upgrades that they want.
This is a big one for me.
You may have noticed a change in my thinking on this blog, as reflected in the language I use to describe what Time Management 2.0 is all about. In my older posts, I wrote a lot about “creating a time management system.”
Built into my first posts was an assumption that has become more important — knowing your current skill level (i.e. your current belt level) is critical to creating a new system.
What I have made much more obvious is the fact that no-one is starting from scratch, or from zero, so it’s more accurate to use the word “upgrade” than “create.”
This small difference has gotten a lot of positive feedback, as I believe that most people are interested in improving their time management systems, and don’t want to be locked into any one system or another. Instead they want the freedom to sample different approaches, and choose what they like from each.
This is the very opposite of those who insist that following time management system “XYZ” means marching in a military-like lock-step to its prescribed practices. They insist that it’s adherents must learn to execute each and every step exactly as it’s designed, following the prescription down to the last letter.
I’m sure that this approach works for some people…
I suspect that most people are interested in getting to the point where they make up their own minds, rather than simply following another person’s opinions.
This is how I read the data that I collected in the survey — am I reading too much into it?