Everyone wants to be more productive. Unfortunately, far too many of us try to achieve this by cramming more into our days, burning the midnight oil, and scrambling to cover as much ground as possible. The real path to productivity is one of prioritizing, delegation, and focus. You don’t have to do everything – you need to do the most important things.
In this list, you’ll find 6 daily habits that will help you gain control of your to do list, and perhaps more importantly, prompt you to evaluate all of things on your plate to figure what you have to do personally, and what can be delegated to others on your team. The process of developing greater daily productivity requires subtraction, acceptance of imperfection, and acknowledging the areas in which you’re most effective. You don’t have to do it all alone, and if you try, true productivity will continue to elude you.
Incorporate these habits into your daily life, and you’re sure to get more done – and worry less.
6 Daily Productivity Habits
1. Focus on the items you’re passionate about that need your superior skills. Stop doing everything else.
- If you’re making yourself busy, stop!
- With every task, ask, “Can someone else handle this?”
2. Focus on the six most important things you want to finish. Do the first three before noon.
- Boulders are different than rocks. The most important thing is identifying the most important thing.
- Letting go of getting it all done is letting go of perfectionism driven by your ideals.
- Choose the items that are most important and make them urgent.
- Be intentional. Where are you going in 100 days, what three outcomes are you creating, and what does that indicate you must focus on most today?
3. Delegate your schedule to a personal assistant, your project list to an impact manager, and the execution to a focus manager.
- Delegate what irritates you most, first.
- Delegate any important items that you’ve put off for more than 14 days; immediately offload it or delete it.
4. The first 90 minutes of your day is your morning burst. It is prime time. Use it.
- Begin your 90 minute burst with a five minute daily huddle with your top three support staff (Personal Assistant, Impact Manager, and Focus Manager).
- Do not answer email first thing in the morning. It will distract you and rope you into detail work. Schedule two times for answering email at noon and 4pm.
- Do not answer phone calls first thing in the morning, let them go to voicemail or have your staff answer the phone. Schedule two times for returning calls and checking voicemails.
- Say hello and goodbye to distractions to maintain control. “I’m prepared to handle that,” then pivot a time and place when you will respond with quality attention, for their sake.
5. Let your personal assistant manage your email.
- Make a list of the top ten people that MUST be forwarded to you without question. This is your VIP list that gets through the “iron curtain.”
6. Set aside 30 minutes at a regular time every day for a “Gotta Minute Meeting” to corral staff questions and issues.
- Don’t solve staff issues until the gotta minute meeting. This forces them to come up with solutions themselves.
- Ask staff to try three solutions before they tee up a gotta minute question or help request.
- During the meeting, ask them to describe the problem, the impact, what they’re tried to solve it, and the result.
- Ask them to tell you how they intend to solve it moving forward.
- Give them a feedback loop to inform you of their results post mortem – time and place.
Download the full PDF here: ProductivityHabits.pdf
Read more about how you can become more productive in my book, The Day I Built My BBQ, available on Kindle.