3 Proven Productivity Secrets to Get MORE Done!

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“Time is money.”  Those three words are crucial for entrepreneurs to remember. It’s crucial to learn how to sort through the multitude of tasks which are necessary on a daily basis and never seem to let us feel “caught up”. The key is to maintain focus every day on only the key revenue-generating activities, while letting the majority of the “distractions” fade away.
It’s important to evaluate each task as income producing or a task that feels “busy” but isn’t going to move the business forward in the near feature. Sometimes entrepreneurs hide out by burying themselves in marketing projects such as redesigning the “perfect” business card, even though they rarely leave their offices. Or they spend weeks revamping websites when they don’t have a full practice and their time would be better spent on immediate client attraction strategies. Or they spend hours “marketing” on Facebook rather than planning list building workshops and speaking events.
There are three proven time management strategies that can go a long way to helping keep you laser focused and effective in increasing your profits.
1. The 80/20 Rule: Every week I ask my private platinum clients to send me a list of their “Big Rocks”. These are tasks that carry the most priority for client generating and income producing tasks. Most business owners have a version of this known as the “to do” list. Usually, we can safely cross off over half the items on there, with no negative impact on profits. It’s very common to spend way too much time on irrelevant tasks that have little or nothing to do with the attainment of our most important short and long term goals.
There is an economic principle called the 80/20 Rule, or Pareto Principle. The 80/20 Rule basically means that 80% of the effects of anything in our lives will come from 20% of the causes.  The 80/20 Rule has been applied to sales, wealth demographics, test scores, etc. It could even be applied to diet, marriage, health and exercise. 

When applied to the To Do list, it means that 80 percent of the value of the daily list comes from only 20 percent of the items on it. In other words, if you have 10 items on your list, you could focus on only two tasks and get the vast majority of success just from those two activities – while crossing off the other 8 items entirely.

2. Delegate: So what do you do with the 80% of the tasks that you have crossed off your list? Does Tony Hseih answer his own phones or deal with customer returns? Does Steve Jobs ring up iPad customers? Of course not, they have employees to do those things while they attend to more important things. You may think that you can’t afford to hire someone, and it’s a well worn cliche, but you can’t afford not to. If a business isn’t moving forward at a fast clip, it stagnates and slips backward. Hire someone just five to ten hours a week for a few months and you’ll wonder why the heck you didn’t do it sooner.

3. Stretch Your Comfort Zone: If your time is spent doing only what is comfortable and feels “safe”, your time isn’t being spent wisely. It’s the things we fear the most that create the most growth in life, and this includes business. It’s similar to hiring a personal trainer. Workouts that become routine because we don’t push ourselves stops creating growth and change for the body. A personal trainer pushes us harder than we would on our own, and results appear quickly because of it.

As a business coach, I push my clients to do what they fear, such as creating videos instead of only writing their ezines, to blog frequently, hold teleseminars, contact the press, etc. The clients who commit and folllow through on their action steps see fast and profitable growth within their businesses. Where are you holding yourself back and what is it costing you?

There are only 24 hours in a day for every entrepreneur, and hopefully only eight of them are allocated for working so there is a healthy work/life balance. What we do with those hours will make the difference between working hard and working smart.

Which of these tips can you most relate to and what will you take to heart starting today?


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