If you’ve been following my work for any length of time you probably already know that I’m really big on time manipulation, outsourcing, process design & refinement… It’s the type of thing that can literally “make or break” your business if you do it right (or don’t do it right)!
So while I’m waiting for some videos to upload I wanted to fire off a quick blog post to share with you the 3 biggest tips I have for getting more done in less time so you can go do other non-crappy-work stuff.
Tip #1 – Pareto’s Law (The 80/20 Rule)
If you’re a fan of the 4 Hour Work Week you probably already know about this. For those of you who haven’t read it… go read it now The 80/20 rule is a very simple, often forgotten rule of economics that states that 80% of the results come from 20% of the work.
The crazy thing is, this isn’t just applied towards business, you’ll find this in most areas of life and in fact, the ratio is often even smaller! A perfect example of this is the whole “We are the 99%” campaign that is going on in New York right now. 1% of the population controls 99% of the wealth!
I digress… If you sit down, do a critical analysis of all the tasks you do in a day, you’ll find that only about 20% of them contribute to the bottom line. Maybe only 20% of your customers cause 80% of your problems. Whatever the ratio is, focus on acheiving the greatest amount of leverage. Fire the 20% of your customers that cause 80% of your problems. Find more customers like the 20% that give you your biggest source of revenue.
Once you’ve done your analysis suddenly priorities shift & business becomes much clearer.
#2 – Time Compression
I love this tactic. In fact, I’m using it RIGHT NOW to get this article done. You see… I have this problem. It’s kinda like shiny object syndrome… and I’m pretty sure a lot of my readers have to deal with this too. It’s the entrepreneur curse & this is the cure for it. If you want to accomplish incredible feats of productivity that is going to make your boss (or business partners’) head spin then pay attention.
Project length expands as time allows.
In a nutshell, what that means is that if you give a project 2 weeks to completion, it will take 2 weeks. If you give that same project 2 days, it will magically get completed in 2 days.
By setting ridiculously short deadlines on projects you complete them now and you don’t overanalyze. Just the act of putting pen to paper (or cursor to pixel) motivates you to keep moving & with the deadline constantly chasing you you accomplish your tasks VERY fast. Using this strategy I’ve accomplished entire days tasks in a couple of hours. This works.
Tip #3 – The To-Do List
Ahh… the dreaded “to do” list. The epic, 10 page list of crap that you’re stuck doing because … well it needs to get done. You look down at your list, horrified at the amount of work and think…
“Screw it! I’ll do it tomorrow!”
Does that sound familiar? If it does – you’ll love this tip. I started using this a year ago and have had more productive days since then than I can count. The idea is simple. Your task list is intimidating and you don’t feel like you’re getting any progress. That’s why you don’t do it. How do we solve that? Easy.
When creating your daily task list only put 3 items on it per day. 1 big item and 2 smaller ones. When you have a short to-do list it seems manageable and you actually accomplish it. In fact, most of the time you’ll just continue working beyond what you had to do today anyway! But the difference is that this gives you the motivation to get the ball rolling (especially with that egg timer chasing you).
Ok… so it looks like those videos are done uploading… I actually created them for you & you’ll get a chance to see them in the next few days. I’m really excited b/c I’m going to be announcing something I’ve NEVER done before and has really… never been done in our industry. The big announcement is coming this Thursday… & it involves you getting a FREE Virtual assistant. So keep your eyes peeled
The time compression tip is the most valuable reminder to me. Giving yourself time to get something done properly is one thing, but setting aggressive deadlines not only compresses time as you’ve described but it also trains you to take massive action consistently! That’s what I call a win-win scenario :^) Thanks for sharing these valuable strategies. Can’t wait to see those videos!
I find having a To-do list really helpful. I have just started keeping my list on Evernote, this way I can check off those tasks that I have completed. I have a daily list and a weekly/monthly list. As long as I remember to open Evernote I am good. I like to prioritize the tasks in order of importance and so far this is working well for me.
Thanks for sharing Adam.