Avoid Killing Your Productivity

As a solo-preneur, many of my clients, colleagues and friends ask me how I manage to get so much done and sustain my productivity, particularly when you consider that with travel and client commitments, I only spend about one day a week in my office.

I’ll admit that sometimes it’s not easy to keep up, but there are a few things I practice (almost religiously) that I thought I would share, as well as some “tools of the trade” that help me continue to increase (and sustain) my productivity.

My habits:

1. It’s virtually difficult to remember everything. As a result I make a note of everything (of relative importance) that I have to do, using either my day planner or “Notes” on my iPhone. I have began to experiment some with Evernote and am finding some advantages, so I will report back here once I have determined whether it will aid my productivity or not.

2. Not everything is a priority, so at least twice each day (typically in the morning and again in the evening) I prioritize my list. When I prioritize I consider putting items into one of four buckets:

Top priority (action items that need to be completed in the next 24 hours such as Coaching or mentoring calls; client work and personal priorities)

Priority task (action items that need to be completed during the week such as projects, new offerings and workshops and developing new talks)

Long-term planning (strategic actions that require planning and consideration such as shooting new videos, website improvements or introduction of new services)

“When I get to it” tasks (these are typically things that do not require much effort or thought, which I often delegate, outsource or do during downtime such as in the evening when watching TV)

“Forget about it” tasks (these are items that stay on my list for a week or two, that do not fit into any of the buckets above, that I eventually decide to remove and forget. If I can’t bucket them or haven’t addressed them, then they aren’t something I should invest energy in. Examples might include investigation of a new App or technology.)

I will share the tools I use in a future post, so stay tuned. In the meantime I’m curious about your planning and prioritization methods, so feel free to post a comment below and share the system you are using.

© Shawn Casemore 2014. All rights reserved.


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