Time Management: Laurie Nordquist

Time Management: Laurie Nordquist

A longtime Wells Fargo executive, Laurie Nordquist oversees the bank’s Upper Midwest region, which includes 350 branches from Illinois to Montana. Based in the Twin Cities, Nordquist leads nearly 4,000 team members.

Email. “I have a wonderful administrative assistant who monitors my emails during the day and can alert me if something is urgent. Otherwise, most of my email work is before 8 a.m. and after 5 p.m.”

Social media. “I’m active on LinkedIn, not as much on Twitter. I use Instagram to keep in touch with my grown kids.”

Drive time. “I do my best thinking when I am driving or out on a walk alone. If I’m on a long drive, I love to listen to a variety of podcasts. Of course, on the weekend, I love Gopher football and the Vikings.”

Fridays. “I try to keep Fridays as an office day, which also allows me to work remotely at our cabin in Bemidji. It’s my opportunity to relax.”

5:30 a.m. Wake up. Check news highlights and have a quick breakfast of oatmeal or a protein bar.

5:45 a.m. Work out at Calhoun Beach Club. If traveling, bring resistance bands to work out in hotel room.

7 a.m. Head to office. Review email and calendar and read relevant materials for the day.

8-11 a.m. Branch visits. Huddle with team; meet with partners.

11 a.m.-1 p.m. Community meetings or conference call. “I also try to get a 15-minute walk in and maybe a bowl of soup or salad.”

1-5 p.m. Meetings. Usually a mix of team conference calls and one-on-ones.

5-6 p.m. West Coast calls. “If I don’t have a conference call with a West Coast colleague, then I use the time to get through emails.”

Evening. Community events two to three nights per week or travel to outstate territories. “On free nights, I love to walk around Lake Calhoun before dinner and read.”

Meeting protocol

  • “I expect materials provided at least a day before the meeting so everyone comes prepared.”
  • “I ask the team to use meetings for discussion and decisions. If the topic is FYI only, then I prefer that the info be provided via email or that the update is very short in the actual meeting.”
  • “I prefer that our meetings are via video conference or in person. Teleconferences are fine for short updates but not as conducive to credible challenge and discussion.”

Skip conversations
“Often when I have an opening, I end up doing some ‘skip conversations’ or meeting with team members about their career aspirations.” This is where upper-level management bypasses mid-level managers to talk directly to frontline employees.