Have you ever felt exhausted at the end of the day,
knowing you worked your butt off and yet wondering what the heck you
actually accomplished or, worse yet, wondering why nothing has been
crossed off your “to do” list? It’s frustrating to say the least.
Here are seven strategies guaranteed to increase your productivity…and I don’t use the word “guaranteed” lightly!
1. Most “To-Do” lists are useless.
I’ve said it and those time management companies who insist we make
lists and put pretty-colored “A”, “B”, and “C” identifiers after tasks
will have to deal with it.
The reason why, quite simply, is that
tasks have start times, but no end times. If you make just one change,
do this: Put a start and an end time for everything you do and watch how much you get done!
2. The right “tools”
need to have a schedule – one where YOU purposefully script out those
things that are your priorities for the day and you insure that nothing
“bumps” them. I have a schedule for each day, week and for the year so
if a client asks me to attend a call or visit his office, I know what
Your schedule should include those things that you
need to do every day until you have built a routine around them. I
write every day. Not some days, not most days, but every day and it was
only by having it on my schedule that it got done. It’s now a routine
that I rarely miss.
Another critical tool is what I
affectionately call my “Chat Pad”. I have a steno notebook for each
client/key person that I deal with and keep a list of what I need to
discuss with them (and the resulting actions of that discussion) so I
can group phone calls or send one summary email rather than several
throughout the day.
3. Ask this question.
What is the most effective use of your time RIGHT NOW?
those rare times when you haven’t scheduled your time, ask yourself the
above question and then follow through with working on the answer. You
will dramatically increase the quality of the work you do.
4. Know your worth.
much money do you want to make this year? If we assume that you work
8-hour workdays and you will earn $50,000 this year, then each hour is
worth $25.61 and every minute is worth $0.427.
You intend on
making $100,000 this year? Then double the above figures: every hour is
worth $51.23 and every minute is worth $0.852.
So for every workday hour that you waste, you have lost $6,250 on a $50,000 income and $12,500 on a $100,000 income.
5. Delegate, don’t abdicate.
an entrepreneur (or aspiring entrepreneur) who now knows the value of
his time, you recognize that it is worthwhile to delegate those
activities that you either aren’t good at or dislike.
delegating is critical to the most optimal use of your time and
energies, be sure not to abdicate responsibility for those items. Keep
a running list of the tasks you’ve delegated and check in with that
person (remind yourself using your “Chat Pad”).
6. Post your goals.
Having your goals posted provides consistent motivation on why you are doing the things you are doing.
an extra kick in the pants? Post a picture of that new car, new home,
or dream vacation. Seeing the reason you are working to meet your goals
will provide your subconscious with extra motivation to get the job
7. Keep a success journal
can be done several ways. You can simply keep a written record of all
your successes or, you can follow Arnold Palmer’s method: he had a
table wherein he inlaid his golf medals and, when he placed one medal
in the table, he had a new hole grouted for the next, as-yet-to-be-won
medal. Always looking ahead, always anticipating the next success.
this: time can not be replaced. You can replace money, you can replace
clients or projects. You can not replace time. Use it wisely.
Sandra Martini, the
Automatic Business Coach, and award-winning author teaches small business
owners how to implement processes and systems designed to take them out of the
day-to-day running of their business. For more information and to receive her FREE e-course/audio series, ">"5
Quick & Easy Ways To Put Your Marketing on Autopilot", visit http://www.SandraMartini.com