Whatever your management Style, Whatever your Preference, Whatever your Tasks, the following will help you Be More Productive. The first step to increasing productivity, regardless of your style or preferences is to get all of your ideas and to do items recorded in some way, whether it is a written list, on a voice recorded memo, or using an App. This helps because you get it out of your head! You will be amazed how much clearer you can think and function and how much less overwhelmed you feel once you know you have those great ideas or bothersome tasks that keep popping into your head listed somewhere. Your brain will stop revisiting it over and over. Phew… that helped!
Now take the list and divide it into two main categories: Actionable vs. Non-Actionable Tasks. Non-Actionable items are those things that are on your mind, maybe an idea or perhaps something that is bothering you a bit, but not something you are able, willing, or ready to take an action on. Some people might suggest there is no need to even write them down. As we suggested in the last paragraph writing them down helps to get them out of your brain, clearing the way for better focus and productivity. We find writing them down helps us alleviate procrastination too because we are not distracted with those recurring thoughts.
For the next couple weeks set the Non-Actionable Items list aside. Then review the list and move any you feel can and should be completed to the Actionable List. Review the Non-Actionable list every two weeks. Any items that remain on your Non-Action list for more than a month should be DELETED… permanently!
Now onto the Actionable list. Here you have a couple of options. Some prefer to sort them into Critical vs. Non-Critical. Others prefer to sort them into Short Term & Long Term. If you think about it, these are relatively similar. So whichever you prefer is fine so start marking them accordingly.
Great progress! Next step is to prioritize the two separate lists. This process sometimes results in moving items to the other list as the process of thinking through the priorities may cause you to determine it belongs on the other list.
This next step is one of the hardest for many business owners and managers. Delegate! Start with the Critical or Short Term list (depending on which list titles you choose to use) and highlight the items that will not cause great harm to your business if it is completed by someone other than you, even though they may not do it your way or as well as you! It is common to have fears or anxiety over delegating. But the fact is no business can grow if the owners and managers fail to delegate. So not delegating is often more damaging than delegating to someone who won’t do it as well as you would like. Now move the tasks identified as able to delegate to a separate list.
Here is where technology can make a big difference in your business by using an App for organizing, delegating, and overseeing tasks. We completely understand that there are so many “Apps for That” available that it can be confusing to review and choose. The key is don’t worry about finding the “perfect” app. Do some research and choose one and start. It does not have to be a forever decision, in fact even if you do find a “perfect” one today, your business will change and morph as it grows, and you will need to research and choose a different one in the future anyway. We often hear stories from business owners who bought into very extensive systems just to fail at implementation due to the mismatch to current needs. Our advice is select one that is as simple as possible for your needs.
We truly enjoy helping our clients grow and prosper their business. If you have questions, ideas, or concerns about the future of your business please give us a call. We provide the first consultation at no charge and you will receive some good advice and ideas during that call.