Have you ever wondered how you can become a more productive entrepreneur?
Productivity maximization is something every ambitious entrepreneur should master as soon as possible to increase long-term profits exponentially.
The entrepreneur’s struggle
If you consistently have a hard time getting important things done, I understand. Like many entrepreneurs, I too experienced the same problem. The good news is your struggle will be over soon.
Let’s look at five practical hacks designed to significantly increase your productivity and boost profits. These pointers will work even if you have a hard time focusing or perpetually disorganized.
1. Get an accountability coach or partner
A majority of people aren’t as productive as they want to (and could) be as they don’t have anybody to help track their progress. However, when you find an accountability coach or partner, someone you trust or respect and commit to the journey, the desire to remain productive comes more easily.
This is why coaching is a powerful tool to transform lives. Actors improve acting skills with coaches, entrepreneurs seek growth with the help of a business coach, and athletes improve performance with the aid of a coach.
In my personal experience, I’ve found a coach to be a powerful aid to increase productivity not only because he or she is skilled, but also because I’ve invested money to reap the benefits of their help. I still remember the first time I hired a coach. I saw my productivity rise like never before. I also felt I had lost so much precious time before being coached.
2: Track time spent on each activity
Until you become conscious of something, that thing won’t truly exist for you. The same thing happens with all of the activities that cripple your productivity (e.g., watching useless TV shows, discussing trivial topics, or complaining when things don’t go as planned).
If being productive is your primary goal, I strongly advise you to track how much time you spend working and how much time you spend on all other things not related to your business. Thanks to the plethora of apps, you can easily track the time spent on each activity you perform during your day. Once you become aware of how much time you spend on unproductive things, you’ll be surprised by how much time you waste on an average day.
Next, consider the long-term consequences associated with wasting time each day –– it adds up. For example, by saving a mere 15 minutes a day, you’ll have saved 91 hours per year. That’s enough time to improve in almost every skill. Meanwhile, if you save one hour per day, you’ll have saved 365 hours a year.
Consider an average pay rate of $30 per hour in the US. By putting those hours into practical application, you could make $11,000 or more each year. Surprising? Yes. That’s why you should start tracking your time –– today.
3: Apply the ‘squared’ 80/20 rule
In personal growth circles, people often discuss and apply the 80/20 rule to productivity. The Pareto Principle states that 80% of your results come from only 20% of your efforts. In terms of productivity, the principle suggests you should focus your time on 20% of the activities that will produce 80% of the results you desire.
Let’s suppose you are a freelance graphic designer looking for new clients. In that case, you should focus your time on the client’s search (i.e., business development) and perfecting your craft. Why? Because those are the activities that will make you a better and more profitable graphic designer.
The problem with the standard 80/20 rule is that it would stop here, but you shouldn’t. What if you stretch the rule even more and divide your 80/20 principal activities by another 80/20? You will find out which one activity is the most important for you. Remember: productivity has nothing to do with how much time you work, but instead the results you produce while working in a defined amount of time.
4. First things first
Applying the previous exercise, you will discover the most critical activities where you should exert your focus.
To become even more productive, accomplish your primary activities in the very morning since that’s the time when your willpower will be at its most abundant. The cool thing is that once you get the most important things done, you can slow down for the rest of the day and convert to a more creative mindset.
So, prioritize your activities from most important to least important. I use the Wunderlist app to keep me organized. It sends me reminders as I need them. I also write my priority activities on a post-it and stick it on my laptop, where I can see it. I’ve found this to be a great way to avoid trivial distractions.
5. Automate the process
Now that you have a well-built productivity system, the next-level goal is to implement it with a system of habits. It’s scientifically that our brain needs an average of 66 days to form a habit and rewire the practice into our brains. Ideally, the habit should be practiced daily. You have two options:
- Force yourself to implement the habit in your daily life until it becomes automatic. This approach requires considerable willpower, but it is doable (I’ve done it many times, as many people do, and so can you.).
- Look for a habit coach to help you implement these new habits into your lifestyle. If you don’t want to use significant willpower during the transition period, this is a smart option. Alternatively, you can give it a go by yourself and see if you make any tangible progress.
Whatever your choice, implement one habit at a time to ensure you aren’t overloaded with too much pressure. Then, once you have successfully implemented the first habit, you can move to the second, third, and so on.
Sal Damiata is a systems and relationships consultant. He helps ambitious men achieve holistic success by creating systemic synergies in the most fundamental areas of their lives.
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