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Tom Peters in one of my business idols. When he says something, I listen. Recently he tweeted something that challenged me and made me rethink a position.

He tweeted that he believes that a CEO should have at least 50% of his/her time unscheduled. He went further in comments that if they are 100% scheduled, they should be fired because they are bad at training and delegation.

I totally agree that if you are overscheduled, you most likely are poor at coaching, development, and delegation. But is 50% the right number? The more I thought about it, I realized that he is probably right when it comes to the CEO.

How about front-line managers?

I couldn't find any studies on this, so I'm using my judgement and experience and realize that this could be different depending on the situation.

I believe that at least 50% and probably closer to 60% should be the goal of the front-line manager. When I think about the program I've created, so much of it is building relationships, communicating, providing feedback, and coaching. Those are things that aren't necessarily scheduled. I can't say "Tuesday from 2-3 I am going to give feedback". It is done in the moment.

In short, if you are overscheduled, you have fewer opportunities to do the things you need to do to make your team great.

Once again, Tom Peters teaches me a lesson without even trying.

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