Carve Out Time to Think

Dan Markovitz recently discussed the practice of the CEO of eBay to take thinking days, Why isn’t “thinking time” part of your standard work?,

Some people think that it’s all well and good for a CEO to unplug himself — when you’re the big cheese, you make the rules — that’s just not possible for the folks in the trenches. But I think that’s a lie. Unless you’re in a sadly dysfunctional organization (and if you are, feel free to stop reading now and go to for the latest baseball scores), you’re being paid to create value for customers (internal or external). You’re not being paid to respond to every random thought or idle question in 8 nanoseconds. And to create value, sometimes you have to actually stop and think.

And a recent Business Week article quotes Turner Broadcasting CEO, Phil Kent: “carve out time to think, not just to react.”

I agree. We need to take more time to think and reflect on how to improve the system to produce better results. We too often find ourselves trapped by spending so much time reacting to seemingly urgent but less important matters. We need to make time to focus on important but perhaps less urgent matters. And taking time to think is part of doing so.

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