Most everyone would like to be more efficient. Just think, you would spend less time doing the things that you don’t enjoy and more on the things that bring satisfaction, happiness and profit. Some people are actually very adept at efficiency. They manage every manageable moment so they have more time for themselves to do the things they love.
Many people fool themselves into thinking they are good at multitasking. But actually very few can solidly focus on more than 1 or two tasks, particularly if they require focus and depth. They fool themselves into believing they are getting more done when in reality they are accomplishing less and the quality of the work is poor. Really efficient people know that concentrated effort with few distractions leads to better work product in faster times. Otherwise the work may not be up to par, which means wasting even more time and energy going back to fix the mistakes.
So much productivity is lost when people take on more than they can accomplish. Don’t be inspired by CEOs and leaders who overload their schedules and burn the midnight oil. Really efficient people are extremely good at delegating tasks to others who will perform them better. When you know how to break down a task and empower others to contribute effort, you can choose the tasks most suited for you and crank through them in record time without distraction.
Use Appropriate Communication
Poor communication is a huge time-waster. A fast email transmitting bad instructions or an offensive attitude can end up adding many unnecessary hours to a project. The masters of efficiency take a little extra time to think through their communication in the beginning. They consider their objectives when deciding to get on the phone. They craft their emails with purpose using the exact language necessary to get the desired effect. It takes a little more time at the beginning but can actually shave days from a project.
Apply Structure to the Schedule
With all the available scheduling and productivity tools you would think more people would feel they have a handle on their schedule. And yet often people feel their schedule drives them instead of the other way around. Efficiency fanatics create standard routines in their schedule so they can achieve a disciplined approach and be ready for the important events. The more you control the calendar, the easier it is to make room for the unexpected.
Give Everything a Proper Place
A lot of time is wasted chasing down lost items. Keys, pens and clothing hunts can cause distraction and frustration, especially when you have something important to do or somewhere important to be. People get really efficient from being organized. Establish a home for all the items you have. Factories that practice LEAN create common homes for necessary tools of the trade. You can do the same. Organize clothes, papers and electronics in a way that you can easily find what you are looking for. It may take you a few extra minutes to put things away but you’ll save a ton of time and irritation from having to search for what’s important.
Do you really know how much time you spend productively versus how much time you waste? I often know that I am talking on the phone with someone who takes efficiency seriously because they tell me when the call is almost over. Efficient people set a time for each of their tasks and work to keep the schedule. Try logging your time on conversations and activities for a week. Then spend the next week setting specific times for similar activities and work to reduce the times with similar output. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the gains.
Commit to Downtime
Tired and overworked people don’t perform well. People pleasers will sacrifice their own downtime thinking they are benefiting others, but in truth they detract from productivity. Really efficient people make sure they get rest and recuperation so they can perform at their peak. Since one amazing employee can do the work of three average employees, best to let the team rest up and be top performers.
Effort is often wasted when people don’t have a clear path to success. Impatience is the direct enemy of efficiency. Really efficient people know they must take the time to research and break down a project into basic steps in order to achieve success consistently. Yes, planning takes a little time. But considering the challenges, process and responsibilities in advance will make for clear direction with the team. With good communication everyone can move confidently and efficiently to achieve all the objectives in record time.
We’ve all known that person who always seems to be getting things done.
Whether a friend or a colleague, this is the person whose work is always done early. The one who somehow manages to finish hour-long tasks in 20 minutes.
The one people describe as a robot or machine, because surely no simple human could work as quickly as they do.
And yet these people exist, cranking away at maximum efficiency. What do these highly productive people have in common? How do they do it?
The habits of highly productive people
It’s tempting to look at highly productive people as machines (or wizards). But by studying how they work efficiently and overcome the challenges we all experience, it’s possible to boost your own productivity as well.
How do the most efficient people overcome challenges like:
- Procrastinating on tasks—both small, nagging ones and large, challenging ones
- Boring work that needs just to get done
- Responding to email and other messages while working
- Staying motivated and energized throughout the entire work day
- Focusing and finishing the most important projects on their plates
As much as I would like to claim the status of “highly productive person,” the best I can do is say: I’m working on it. But from reading articles, checking out books, and asking questions of productive people, I’ve pulled together the best advice I could find on their productivity habits.
What follows are 18 of the most important habits of highly productive people. From ways to spend less time on emails to methods of staying focused, these productivity tips can help you maximize your efficiency — and get more done.
You can’t become more productive overnight. But if you make small changes and put some of these habits into place, you’ll be well on your way to becoming more efficient.
Increase productivity and become highly efficient with these habits:
- Focus on most important tasks first
- Cultivate deep work
- Keep a distraction list to stay focused
- Use the Eisenhower Matrix to identify long-term priorities
- Use the 80/20 rule
- Break tasks into smaller pieces
- Take breaks
- Make fewer decisions
- Eliminate inefficient communication
- Find repeatable shortcuts
- Learn from successes as well as mistakes
- Plan for when things go wrong
- Work before you get motivated or inspired
- Don’t multitask
- Fill the tank — recharge
- Sharpen the axe
- Manage your energy (not just time)
- Get better at saying “no”
If this is enough for you to be productive on your work? that’s great! OR if at all you want us to help you further more. Book your appointment now!
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