15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Summary: Kevin Kruse

15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Summary

15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Summary provides a free book summary, key takeaways, review, best quotes and author biography of Kevin Kruse’s book on time management. Successful people differ from others. Among other things, they’re better at managing their time.

Kevin Kruse is a best-selling author. Besides, he’s a contributor at Forbes and also an Inc. 500 award winner. Plus, he’s a journalist and CEO. His life can tell what success looks like.

Many entrepreneurs, billionaires, etc. stress that they use their time fullest. Great achievers have a necessary mindset. For them, time is an asset. And, this asset is even precious than money. Hence, they spend every second sensibly. Their focus is always on the top goals. They discard clutter from the workplace and avoid time-consuming commitments. All practical entrepreneurs assign most tasks. This guide is full of critical insights. High achievers stress the need for rest, workout and fun. That’s the reason why Kruse includes some exciting apps. We highly recommend this book 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management to everyone who wants to be more successful.

“Highly successful people don’t think about time much at all. Instead, they think about values, priorities and consistent habits.”

This Summary Will Help You Learn

  • How high-achievers make use of their time,
  • Ways to avoid distractions to focus on your top goals and priorities, and
  • How recreation and rest can also enable success.


  • For highly successful people, time is their biggest asset.
  • A properly scheduled calendar increases focus and free from stress.
  • Knowing your top goal will help in prioritizing tasks.
  • Many successful entrepreneurs carry a notepad to note their ideas instantly.
  • Engage in short daily activities. This can decrease emails, replace long meetings and bond your team.
  • As per the 80/20 principle, 20% work produces 80% results.
  • Delegate as much work as possible. This frees you to focus on your top-goals.
  • Most entrepreneurs dedicate themes for different days. For example, “buffer day” or “focus day.”
  • Top achievers finish upcoming small tasks instantly to avoid clutter.
  • Renew your mental and physical energy by relaxing and sleeping. This will improve productivity.

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15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Summary

Fifteen Top Time-Management Tips

A series of interviews were conducted with billionaires, entrepreneurs, Olympians and top students. These people revealed their 15 helpful time-management tips:

  1. “Time Is Your Most Valuable and Scarcest Resource”

As a CEO, Kevin Kruse had regular interruptions. Irritated by this, he hung a big sign that read 1440. He saw his day as 1,440 minutes of likely success. This helped him focus on crucial tasks. His employees also started using his 1,440-minute approach. Hence, efficiency improved throughout his firm. Kruse interviewed other high achievers. And thus, it was confirmed that they also share a similar mindset. For them, time is the most precious asset. The loss of money or a failed business still leave opportunities ahead. But, time which is lost is irreplaceable. 

  1. “Identify Your Most Important Task” and Do It First

Successful people have their eyes set on long-term goals and top priorities. But, they also determine the relevant short-term goals they should achieve first. They break short-term goals into measurable actions. This guides them to their “most important tasks” (MIT). They focus on finishing all ort portion of their MITs. Only then do they move on to other things. 

Wise CEOs confirm a scientific theory. The brain works the best during the first couple of hours every morning. Airbnb CEO Nathan Blecharczyk uses this energy burst to focus on top priorities. Getting an early start gives a time of relative peace. After that routine issues come up to distract from MITs.

  1. “Work from Your Calendar, Not a To-Do List”

Often, a to-do list turns into a monster. Solving one issue only adds many more to the list. Studies show that most list-makers are unable to finish 41% of their tasks. These lists disorganize the order of priority of your works. Hence, it distracts your focus. Most savvy CEOs depend on tightly scheduled calendars. A proper schedule allows focussing on MITs first. Deciding which things deserve your time helps you avoid wasting time. Entrepreneurs state that strictly calendars planned decrease stress. 

Power players reserve time for single focus, team input, and one-to-one communication. They also keep time for relaxation. Briana Scurry was a goalkeeper for two soccer teams that won gold medals. She took days off from training periodically to reclaim perspective and rest. High-achievers reserve time to look after their personal lives, health, and community. 

  1. To Overcome Procrastination, “Beat Your Future Self”

Most people claim that they pick simpler tasks first but can’t measure up. This is procrastination – leaving things for later. Rather than delaying, follow these:

  • Do now what you promise you’ll do later – To defeat procrastination, do what you must do right now. Don’t trust any future you “to do that thing” later. If you resolve to diet or workout, do it now. Order a salad instead of ice cream. Run before you fall on the couch. People assume they’ll be better later. But, they most likely won’t. Hence, to be successful, be your better version now.
  • For motivation, imagine your results – Always imagine the consequence of your actions. You can finish the task and get happiness. Or not completing it will result in pain.
  • Share the burden – Be responsible to someone who also has similar goals. For example, a fellow jogger. Such sharing forms an emotional commitment. So, find your accountability partner.
  • Grab the carrot; avoid the stick – The assurance of a future reward attracts many people. But, often the dread of punishment works better. Hence, create your non-completion punishment. It could be in the form of a donation. This way your loss can become a community gain.
  • Behave like the person you hope to become – Adopt the attitude of your ideal image for self. This will make you more committed to your goals.
  • Embrace the imperfect – The longing for perfection may lead you into inaction. Hence, accepting imperfection is essential to calm down. Settle for good because you can always continue to improve. 
  1. “There Will Always Be More to Do”

Successful people know their limitations. From a pile of tasks, they pick their top priorities. Then, they try to attain them and leave the rest for the next day. Work could never be ending. But, they know where to set boundaries. Overcome the burden of continuous responsibilities. This will help you live a healthy life without any guilt.

  1. “Always Carry a Notebook”

Some of the famous billionaires credit their success to keeping a handy notebook. This includes Sir Richard Branson. Noting random thoughts, great ideas and meeting notes leave a permanent impression. Both are in your mind and on paper. Studies reveal that the brain uses many interconnected functions to process written information. This leads to more accurate and active recall compared to typing. Once you recall your notes on paper, shift them to the computer. This will be a permanent reference for the future. Also, date your notes, so it becomes easier to refer to them.

“If you aren’t busy working on your own goals, you’ll be working to achieve somebody else’s goals.”

  1. “Control Your Inbox”

McKinsey Global Institute performed a survey on office workers. The results show that employees spend one-third of their days exchanging emails. Email is an easy way for people to place their priorities in your life. So, apply the “321-Zero” rule to keep emails in their place. Thrice a day, devote 21 minutes reading your emails. You aim to have an inbox without any new mail.

This time limit will make you respond with brief and precise answers. Act on every email on opening it. Decide if it needs immediate action or not. Also, check if you need to file it or delegate it. Careful use of Copy and Forward helps you prevent snowballing replies. Hence, your inbox will be clutter-free. Use a bright subject line. This will alert your recipient about the nature of your mail. That is, whether it demands quick response or later action.

  1. “Schedule and Attend Meetings as a Last Resort”

Removing a formal meeting can save a lot of everyone’s time. So, set-up meetings only when other types of communication don’t work. Most entrepreneurs use a short daily activity. They find it to be more unifying, efficient and informative. Steve Jobs was famous for avoiding meetings. Instead, he replaced them with short walks around the workplace. Billionaire Mark Cuban suggests, “don’t waste time in meetings. Do them only when someone is writing a check.”

  1. “Say No to Everything that Doesn’t Support Your Immediate Goals”

Warren Buffett says that “successful people say no to nearly everything.” They understand that every commitment may make them lose better opportunities. Hence, they save their most precious asset. And, don’t agree to any request which doesn’t support their top priorities. 

“Items on a to-do list can sit there forever, constantly getting bumped by things that seem urgent in the moment.”

  1. Follow the “Powerful Pareto Principle”

The Pareto rule says that 20% of work leads to 80% of results. Aspirant billionaires use this rule to find efficient ways to employ their skills. So, apply this principle. And, find the 20% of your tasks that can give 80% of returns. 

  1. Focus on “Your Unique Strengths and Passions”

Harvard research team performed a productivity experiment. They asked employees to assess the tasks they do by three questions. First, can they drop the task entirely as unwanted? Second, can they assign it to a capable subordinate? Third, if they have to do it, can they create a better solution? By sticking to this practice, every employee saved a lot of time. That is 6 hours of desk work for 2 hours of meeting-time every week.

A CEO who consistently assigns to competent employees is more productive. Plus, he is also less stressed. Delegating easier tasks frees your mental space and time to focus on top priorities. Jay Baer is the author of Youtility. He suggests delegating 15% of your works. This is the minimum. But, few successful people don’t delegate some essential functions. For example, Mark Cuban likes doing his laundry.

  1. “Batch Your Work with Recurring Themes”

Innovative entrepreneurs allot themes to their days. This helps their workers focus on a specific kind of work. Such scheduled monthly or weekly themes may include many things. For example, “meeting” days for group training or one-to-one communication. Other themes may be “focus” day for focusing on some specific tasks. Or “buffer” days to catch up. Dustin Moskovitz is the co-founder of Facebook. He has a “No Meeting Wednesdays” theme. Devoting your workers’ whole day to a specific work spurs collective focus. This, in turn, improves productivity.

  1. If You Can Do a Task in “Less Than Five Minute, Do It Immediately”

High achievers pursue an instant return on their time. To speed up work, they follow a “touch it once” rule:

  • Handle email immediately – Assign as much work as you can. Instantly finish anything you can do in a short time. If you’re unable to resolve any request spontaneously, add it to schedule.
  • Update your calendar as needed – Shift lengthy tasks from email to your schedule as a reminder. Keep aside some time weekly to handle routine tasks, e.g., paying bills.
  • Regularly clear clutter – You can waste your precious time looking for misplaced items. Hence, keep your surroundings organized. Because a messy environment leads to stress.
  1. Routinely Use Early Mornings to “Strengthen Your Mind, Body, and Spirit”

Most entrepreneurs adopt a morning regime to revive mentally and physically. They drink plenty of water, workout and eat healthily. Busy CEOs refresh their brains by meditating or reading. Arnold Schwarzenegger wakes up at dawn to read many newspapers. He then exercises and eats a healthy breakfast of oatmeal and fruits. 

“Highly successful people don’t have a to-do list, but they do have a very well-kept calendar.”

  1. “Productivity Is About Energy and Focus, Not Time”

Hard workers keep room for relaxation. Working for long hours doesn’t mean better results. Instead, working in brief intervals and maintaining energy levels helps efficiency. The brain’s ability to process things soundly falls during the day. It drops from full energy to tiredness every 90 minutes. Hence, frequent breaks for snacks, water, light workout revive the mind. This encourages higher efficiency. Mohammed Dewji is the CEO of MeTL Group, Tanzania. He follows a midday exercise routine to restore his focus and energy.

Spend enough time to nurture the energy needed to perform. Olympic athletes sleep to rejuvenate their bodies. Shannon Miller is a 7-time Olympic medal winner in gymnastics. She reports enjoying short power naps. Eating healthy food, taking rest and having fun revive focus and stamina. This leads to higher efficiency and improves your life.

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15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Review

There are 15 tips of the time management that the top billionaires and the business person adopt to get the most from their work.

Firstly one must value the time and know that it is the most critical assets. By assessing the time the person able to manage all of the essential tasks and also finish them on time.  Secondly, one must know what is most important to him and done first. Third, rather than making to do list one must make the schedule of all the tasks on the calendar like most of the CEO and the top managers do. Fourth, the thing must be done immediately and not be throw to done on tomorrow. Many of the people are not able to do there critical task because they prefer to do the more straightforward task first rather than doing the critical ones.

Rule no five, the work in the daily routine is always more than what is expected, so the successful people always make time for the other work also that is not planned. The sixth rule is always to carry a notebook to remind yourself about the schedule of the day. Seven is to control the inbox so that minimum time for spending on the exchanging and reading of the emails. Eight, minimize the meetings because it takes a lot of time and plan for the other means of communication

Ninth, it is also imperative for the person to know that what is not essential, and it is ok to say no to such things. Tenth, is the 80-20 rule that indicates that 20% of work impact on 80% of life? Eleventh, one must more focus on the thing that is his strength, and he is passionate about them. Twelve is to Batch Your Work with Recurring Themes. Thirteen, smaller task that takes about 5 minutes must be done immediately. Fourteen, get up early in the morning and fifteen is to learn some of the time management quotes to trigger your mind towards the time management.

15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management Quotes

“Highly successful people don’t think about time much at all. Instead, they think about values, priorities and consistent habits.”

“If you aren’t busy working on your own goals, you’ll be working to achieve somebody else’s goals.”

“Items on a to-do list can sit there forever, constantly getting bumped by things that seem urgent in the moment.”

“Highly successful people don’t have a to-do list, but they do have a very well-kept calendar.”

“When people talk about ‘time management,’ what they really want is to get more stuff done with less stress.”

“Successful people take immediate action on almost every item they encounter. They know that to be efficient, they want to expend the least possible amount of time and mental energy processing things.”

“The act of taking notes by hand involves active listening, cognitive processing and finally recall…People who take notes with a laptop tend to just robotically record spoken words, without doing the mental work to process it.”

“Cognitive capacity declines throughout the day; you must build in frequent mental breaks to recharge and maintain pro­duc­tiv­ity.”

“If you send less email, you’ll also receive less email.”

“Every yes will be a no to something else when the time comes. Un­der­stand­ing that there is always an opportunity cost will make you hesitate and really be careful about what you are agreeing to put on your calendar.”

“People who actively look for things to delegate report higher levels of pro­duc­tiv­ity, happiness and energy.”

“If you don’t have an admin, you are an admin.”

“The single most important thing when it comes to time and pro­duc­tiv­ity isn’t a tactic or a trick – it’s a shift in mind-set.”

About the Author

Kevin Kruse is a contributor at Forbes besides being a New York Times best-selling author. He is also an award winner of Inc. 500. Kruse founded many multimillion dollar firms. He’s also a speaker at many global conferences on productivity.


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