Maynard Webb’s time management tip: Focus on anchor tenants

Editor’s Note: Each week Maynard Webb, former CEO of LiveOps and the previous COO of eBay, will supply candid, sensible, and typically shocking recommendation to entrepreneurs and founders. To submit a query, write to Webb at [email protected].

Q. I’m having hassle determining handle all the pieces. I’ve loads going on that’s essential to me and I’ve quite a lot of incoming requests—some really feel like obligations and a few appear attention-grabbing. I’m unsure what to focus on or prioritize. 

Harried government in 12 months two of Covid


Dear Executive, 

There’s no scarcity of issues the world desires from you and needs you to do. If you aren’t cautious you’re going to get pulled. There’s a stability to dedicating time and a focus to issues it’s important to do whereas saving time for serendipity that may open up issues that will be participating and enjoyable.

I attempt to guarantee I allocate the time and assets on issues that matter most to me. I consider these as anchor tenants, like the large retailers in purchasing malls that took up essentially the most area, captured the most important consideration, and generated the best returns. By naming your anchor tenants you already know what to focus on first. For instance, my prime three anchor tenants are my household, the Webb Investment Network, and the corporate boards I serve. There are different issues which might be additionally essential to me like my basis and my writing that I dedicate constant time to.

What are your anchor tenants that can get your consideration first? And what two to 3 different areas are your priorities? Defining this can provide help to handle what’s most essential. 


One factor to notice: these items change with time. While what you’ve got outlined as your anchor tenants are prime precedence for a time, typically it may be transient. There are issues that occur that demand your consideration, however that might be non permanent. I lately skilled this once I made a change with an organization I used to be partnering with for an essential service. The seek for a brand new workforce was consuming on many ranges however as soon as it was solved it freed me as much as focus on different essential issues. 

Ultimately you need to have the ability to get to a gradual state—it’s nice to have the ability to spend a bit of little bit of time on issues and make progress with no Herculean quantity of effort. This lets you focus on different priorities and might even open time so as to add one other anchor tenant. 

You can’t do all the pieces, however you’ve got capability to do greater than chances are you’ll suppose you are able to do. Start by focusing on what’s most essential proper now. Therefore, it’s important to be even handed in deciding what’s an anchor tenant and booting the issues that have been as soon as priorities or soul meals however not are. It’s about prioritization; don’t really feel badly about saying no to issues you possibly can’t do. It’s the liberty to mean you can do one thing else—one thing that you just’ve outlined as extra essential and significant. 

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