Andrea Novakowski's Coaching Tip of the Week
Andrea Novakowski's Coaching Tip of the Week )
  September 10, 2004 
Contents In This Issue
    The Four Quadrants (A Different Version)
    by Mark Forster

  • Brought to you by Andrea Novakowski, Master Certified Coach, Business and Personal Coaching for Corporations, Businesses and Individuals


    "Sometimes the most urgent and vital thing you can do is take a complete rest."

    -- Unknown

    The Four Quadrants (A Different Version)
    by Mark Forster

    Those of you who are familiar with my materials will know that one of the subjects that I frequently write about is the resistance principle. This is the principle that the thing you should do first is what you are resisting the most.

    I have often contrasted this with Steven Covey's Quadrant 2 theory (from "First Things First"), in which the principle is to do what is important first.

    Covey talks about four quadrants: 1) Important & Urgent, 2) Important & Not Urgent, 3) Urgent & Not Important, and 4) Not Urgent & Not Important. According to Covey, the problem most people have is with Quadrant 2, the important but not urgent. The reason they have a problem is because the important gets submerged under what is urgent.

    Although I can see what Covey means, I have never really felt that his theory reflects how most people actually think when they are working. In my experience there are plenty of people who are just as capable of putting off something that is important and urgent as they are putting off something that is important but not urgent. Frequently the same people will fill their days with stuff that is neither important nor urgent.

    In other words the reason important things get forgotten is not because they get submerged by urgent things -- though it may sometimes look like that.

    As I have frequently said, prioritizing by importance doesn't work, because the question is not how important something is but whether it should be done at all. If it needs to be done, when it needs to be done and, all other things being equal, it doesn't particularly matter what order it's done in as long as it all gets done.

    So I was pleased to read a new book by Ken Blanchard (of "One-Minute Manager" fame) in which he says very much the same thing. The book is called The On-Time, On-Target Manager. /coachandrea

    In it, Blanchard gives a different quadrant from Covey's. It's one which in my opinon is much more geared to the way we actually think.

    His quadrant is 1) Have to Do, Want to Do, 2) Have to Do, Don't Want to Do, 3) Don't Have to Do, Want to Do, 4) Don't Have to Do, Don't Want to Do.

    People don't have any problem with Quadrants 1 and 4. If they have to do it and they want to do it, then they just get on with it. If they don't have to do it and they don't want to do it, then they just don't do it. The problem lies with the other two quadrants.

    What tends to happen is that people tend to do things in the order Quadrant 1), Quadrant 3) and only then Quadrant 2). The result is that a lot of things that don't have to be done get done, while a lot of things that do have to be done don't get done. Sound familiar?

    The solution is to change it so that you do them in the order Quadrant 2), Quadrant 1) and forget about the other two quadrants.

    To use this simple method of prioritizing, write a list of all the things that you feel you must do, should do or could do. Then to the right of the items put two columns "HAVE TO DO?" and "WANT TO DO?" Then tick each item in the relevant columns. Challenge yourself fiercely about whether each item really needs to be done or not.

    You then do the items which have a tick only in the first column. And only when you've finished them do you do the items which have ticks in both columns.

    And then go home!

    Copyright(c) Mark Forster 2004
    Mark Forster can be reached at


    I love Mark's articles because he makes things so simple. To modify Mark's suggestion, this week pull out your existing to do list and add the two columns Mark suggests. (Even simpler than starting a new one.)

    A reminder: Be diligent in challenging yourself as to whether each item needs to be done when reviewing column 1. (So many times when I look at my to do list and what really needs to be done, I can remove a lot of the items that would be nice to do, but . . . )


    September 22, 2004
    simplyEffective Group Coaching Begins
    (Only 7 seats remaining)

    Take advantage of the synergy and value that group coaching provides. What others have said:

    "I've moved from a doer to an enjoyer!"
    -- J.N., Coach/Business Owner, MA

    "Great stuff is showing up in my life, effortlessly."
    -- K.S., Business Owner, MA

    "simplyEffective provides a straightforward and easy way to stay on track, have fun and achieve my goals."
    -- C.S., Business Owner, England

    "It accelerates what is ready to unfold for you."
    C.S., Business Owner, FL

    What is next for you?

    -- A promotion at work?
    -- A new job or career?
    -- Writing a book?
    -- A major life transition?
    -- A leap in income?

    Come join me in this very powerful, imaginative and cost- effective coaching program called simplyEffective. This 11-week program combines group coaching and one-to- one coaching. You will have an immediate boost to productivity as well as the tools to permanently raise your level of effectiveness. I will be co-leading this tele-class with Tina Carey at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. Participation is limited to 8 people per group. To reserve your place, please call 508-231-0766 or go to

    September 23, 2004
    Pounce on a Project VI

    Finish September with a bang! Complete the project that will make the biggest difference in your work or life. Come to "Pounce on a Project VI." Here's what participants are saying:

    "I accomplished a big section of my newsletter re-design that had been stalled on my 'to do' list for many months. Having the support of the group helped me bypass my procrastination and tackle my project with energy."
    -- D.W., Certified Financial Planner, MA

    "Pounce on a Project had me tackling my project head on. Completing it felt so good! Once I started, the angst disappeared."
    -- K.J., Environmental Professional, MA

    "I'm no longer putting off what I love to do!"
    -- K.N., Business Owner, TX

    "I had to get all of my marketing material organized and sent to my advisor. Where was I going to find the time? Pounce on a Project gave me 4 hours of uninterrupted time to easily complete my plan!"
    -- A.N., Business Owner, MA

    "Pounce on a Project enabled me to fulfill a long time goal of mine, while energizing me to undertake other projects that I had been putting off."
    -- L.W., Software Test Engineer, MA

    "The simple structure of commitment and accountability had me easily complete my project."
    -- C.S., Business Owner, England

    "I learned I can use this time to accomplish many small projects I've been putting off. Hooray!"
    -- A.P., Freelance Writer, MA

    Did you know that incompletions and clutter can drain your energy? As we begin the fall season, are there projects or spaces you need to "clean up" to feel successful? In preparation for our next get together, consider the following:

    ** What do I need to let go?
    ** How can I simplify?
    ** What needs to be done to get better organized?
    ** What needs to be stored for future use?

    Join Andrea on Thursday, September 23, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Eastern. We will join as a group by phone and declare what you want to accomplish: organizing your office, simplifying your filing system, cleaning under your bed, finishing your website, planning your pricing strategy for your new products.

    During the morning, the group will gather by phone a few times to check progress and get any support needed to finish with a bang. At noon, the group will celebrate their accomplishments. Who says projects have to be boring and tedious? Bring your lightness and fun and join us for the energization.

    To sign up or learn more, call or e-mail Andrea by noon on September 22, 2004. Space is limited. First come, first served. Feel free to share this with friends and co-workers. (Cost of the program is only the cost of long distance phone calls.)

    October 2, 2004
    Rodman Ride for Kids

    For the past 9 years, I have ridden 50 miles on a bicycle for the Rodman Ride for Kids which benefits children at risk in Massachusetts. (I took the first ride of the season on Labor Day to begin the training.) This year, I have committed my fundraising efforts to benefit all of the agencies because they all do good work.

    E-mail me if you would like to make a donation, to participate, or to receive a brochure on the event. You can also donate and get more information at


    This Coaching Tip of the Week is brought to you by Andrea Novakowski, Master Certified Coach who provides Business and Personal Coaching to Corporations, Businesses, and Individuals. Andrea is a professional coach who partners with people to set goals and create momentum to produce effective results in their business and/or personal lives.

    Andrea is available for individual coaching. If you are serious about reaching your goals and living with greater fulfillment and satisfaction, consider using a coach. To schedule a COMPLIMENTARY initial consultation, send an e-mail to Andrea at


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