A talent for being productive is one of the qualities that sets high-achieving entrepreneurs apart from those that are just average. The following are eight key ways that the very best entrepreneurs get so much done:
Focusing in on one or two specialties is a big productivity key. Conversely, trying to be “all things to all people” disperses your energy and minimizes results. Choose priorities and areas of focus that are aligned with your talents and passions, and you will find it much easier to stay productive and focused.
2. Attack and Block Out Distractions
Be ruthless when it comes to eliminating distractions. Know your “Achille’s heels” and be disciplined about stopping energy-bleeds in these areas. Whether your vice is checking social media, playing games on your smartphone or socializing, set limits and use these activities as a reward for completing X number of tasks.
3. Take Notes and Keep Lists
Keep an ongoing, prioritized list of what needs to be done as well as an ongoing list of thoughts and ideas that come to you throughout the day. You might pride yourself on your memory, but having a list to refer to helps to save brainpower for innovation and other important tasks.
4. Limit Meeting Times
Never schedule open-ended meetings. Determine an ideal time frame based upon the nature of the meeting and stick to it. Learn how to politely but firmly reign in conversations that stray too far off the subject of the meeting.
5. Schedule Your Most Difficult and Complex Tasks In the Morning
While focus and energy levels can wane as the day goes on, most people are at their most focused and sharp at the beginning of the day. Scheduling your most challenging tasks at this time will help you complete them more quickly and efficiently.
6. Start Your Day 30 Minutes Earlier
Mornings set the tone for the entire day and are often the most productive time period. Adding an extra 30 minutes during this crucial time can increase your productivity exponentially.
7. Outsource Tasks That Drain Energy
It is estimated that 20% of an entrepreneur’s activities generate 80% of their success and income. These tend to be the areas you enjoy most and at which you’re most adept. Identify these key tasks and consider outsourcing the rest to staff, virtual assistants or experts at these jobs.
8. Make the Most of Technology
These days, there are endless tools and applications that make the business owner’s job much easier. Some examples include Dropbox for file storage and sharing, Trello for project management, Hootsuite for deadline management and Buffer for social media scheduling. For every business task, there is likely an app to help you do it better – and more efficiently. Take advantage of these tools to assist in streamlining the work day.
Not surprisingly, the most successful entrepreneurs tend to be the ones that are most productive during the work day. Use these eight productivity tips from the busiest entrepreneurs and see how your own effectiveness and results can be enhanced.