In the world of startups, every minute counts. Productivity requires a massive amount of focus on the things that grow your business. For busy entrepreneurs that wear multiple hats it can seem like you’re totally focused on your business, but in reality you’re being pulled in so many directions that you’re getting bogged down by things that don’t really matter.
If you’re ready to kick your productivity into high gear and take your business to the next level, the efficiency boosting tips below are surefire ways to get more done each day.
You know that your ONE Thing is building your business. That ONE Thing means you need to give up a lot of other things. Gary Keller discusses how important it is to learn to say “no” in The ONE Thing.
He points out that, “Achievers operate differently. They have an eye for the essential. They pause just long enough to decide what matters and then allow what matters to drive their day.”
Activity does not equal productivity and not everything is equal. You have to focus on the things that have the greatest impact and let everything else slide or delegate it to someone else. The first step in productivity is deciding what actually needs to be done, followed by prioritizing the items you should do and finally deciding on the most efficient way to complete each task.
Don’t Let Distractions Slow You Down
It’s amazing how much time gets lost to little distractors. Even if they pull your attention away for just a minute, it can take much longer for your brain to refocus on the more important task at hand. This can drain metabolic resources and exhaust your brain.
Author and professor David Rock notes that there seems to be an “epidemic of overwhelm at work” in his book Your Brain at Work. Give yourself a distraction vaccination by creating a disruption-free zone. Shut off all your devices, go to a quiet place and let others know that you are unavailable during your focus time. Square away blocks of no more than one hour for tasks that require intense focus. Experts suggest that the brain can remain effectively focused for up to 45 minutes before needing a break.
Get Rid of Unproductive Habits
Do you really need to check your email every hour? Is sleeping only five hours a night really helping you get more things done during the day? We all have habits, some good and some bad. Luckily these are all learned, which means once you’ve identified the habits that are stealing time and decreasing productivity you can work on breaking them.
On average it takes 66 days to create a new habit, which means in about 9 weeks you can turn a bad habit into a productive one.
Think About What You Can Get Done, Not How Much You Have to Do
Approach things with a positive mindset. When you start the day dreading how much needs to get done and thinking of the long hours it will take to complete all your tasks it’s going to put you in a negative state, which will have a significant impact on your productivity. Instead, think about each day as an opportunity to get more accomplished so you have fewer things to worry about.
Automate as Much as Possible
Any chance you have to leverage technology and automate a process, take it. Even something as simple as an auto payment on your utility bill saves time that can be used to get something else done. Most things that are automated are the mundane, repetitive tasks that don’t take much thought so putting them on autopilot frees you up for the things that really need your attention.
Automation can also work with the more important business tasks, such as following up with leads. This can be automated with a customer relationship management (CRM) system. It takes a little time to set up, but after that emails, newsletters, drip campaigns and online marketing can be scheduled so that they practically manage themselves.
Ask Yourself the Focusing Question
When asked how people can achieve the most extraordinary results, Gary says the focusing question is always the answer. “What’s the ONE Thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?” Ask this over and over again to drill down to what matters most.
Have any Tips?
Do you have any time saving, productivity tips for budding or experienced entrepreneurs? Share them in the comments section below!