Simple. Not so easy, right!? I don’t know about you, but at every point in growing my little empire, I’ve had to be very intentional about what working smarter means. I grew up with the message “work hard and you can achieve anything”. Hopeful … helpful … right up until it’s sooo not. That programming had me connecting my output with my value. And that my friends is simply not true.
I continue to immerse myself in that which helps me to work smarter NOT harder. Here are three tips and strategies that work for me: (continue reading – links to website blog)
- Focus on your 20% – the Pareto Principle tells us that 20% of what you do drives 80% of your results. But you’re a smart person, you know that. Here’s the rub … your 20% is constantly shifting and moving. Periodically block time (more to follow on that) to THINK about what your 20% is. Create some “white space” so that ideas flow. Figure out what your Zone of Genius is and stay there. As the leader of your organization, your 20% absolutely includes strategy and vision – you need to see around corners (thank you COVID for making this crystal clear).
- Spend time each week to PLAN your week. Write it all out – block the time on your calendar. I’ve been talking about this for years – it’s powerful. I color code my calendar:
- Green – revenue producing
- Yellow – leadership
- Purple – content building and speaking
That’s my 20% and I make sure that gets about 80% of my time. The rest are coded as BLACK so I can clearly see when I have too much that falls outside my Zone of Genious. A
When I Plan My Week (which I like to do on Sunday evenings) I also block time for exercise, inspirational time, professional development time, working on key relationships and even a bit of meal planning, The truth is that is “all of me” and unless I block time and plan … something is NOT going to happen leading to stress and underperforming – not for this gal!
Also, explore front loading your days (eat the frog) and your week. My energy is higher earlier in the week than later in the week – I block time accordingly. It’s almost magical.
- Delegate, delegate, delegate. Lately I’ve been marinating in Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker. Now, frankly I’ve built a formidable organization, but I am, by no means, finished. Profit drives possibility and massive profit drives massive possibilities. I am here in the world to make an impact.
Harv says millionaires earn at least $ 500/hour – so what is keeping you from focusing on producing $ 500/hour (every hour). What are the tasks that take you out of your Zone of Genius. For me, it’s the “administrivia” and the detail work . I can do it, but it takes a TON of energy. It’s the bookkeeping, the social media (which is a rabbit hole for me), the CRM tasks, internet research (did I mention seeing around corners), the project management details and so much more.
Consider tracking your time to see where you are “leaking” time.
Simple, not necessarily easy. Right? And it’s a process, not an event. Keep coming back to it. Trust me, it’s worth it.
And speaking of your 20% … building Influence is DEFINITELY part of your 20% so join us for my next webinar: The Power of Influence (and how to get more).