There’s a difference between being busy and being productive. While it’s true that both types of people are able to check items off of their to-do-lists, productive people check off the right items. Productive people focus on the ways that are going to have the biggest impact in both their personal and professional lives.
Would you describe yourself as busy? Or, are you productive? Here are 8 ways to find out:
1. Do you have a purpose?
Every productive individual sets goals so that they know exactly why they’re doing what they’re doing throughout the day. They have long term goals complimented by short-term goals.
Having a purpose requires discipline to reach the goals that you’ve set. If you feel that you don’t have a purpose, start working on developing discipline by knowing your priorities, learning to say “no,” taking care of your health and getting out of your comfort zone.
2. Is there a system in place to support your goals?
As a business owner, your long-term goal is growth and success. However, it takes a system to support and reach those goals. In this case, your system would include marketing, the sales process, operation and being able to meet deadlines.
In order to build the right system, focus on performance measures and acknowledging your continued progress so that you can continue to move forward.
3. What’s your productive work time?
Just because you’re in the workplace from 9 am to 5 pm doesn’t mean that you’re productive; we all have productivity slumps throughout the day. The first place to look when determining your most productive work time is by answering, “Are you an early bird or a night owl?”
If there’s a clear answer, then schedule your work hours based on this [if possible]. Regardless of starting time, always be sure to prioritise your tasks based on importance and/or deadline. If there’s a big, time-sensitive assignment on your to-do list, make it a priority when you have the most energy.
Once you’ve answered that question, you next want to determine what’s holding you back from getting your work done. This could include not setting priorities, poor planning, distractions or waiting until the last minute to complete a task. Knowing this information will allow you to adjust your habits so that you can become more productive.
Finally, take note of your productivity peaks. Jot down in a notebook what you’ve accomplished during a workday so that you can identify patterns so that you can work around your most productive patterns.
4. Are you indecisive?
Do you struggle when it comes to making decisions? Instead of making decisions and moving forward, you spend more time worrying whether or not you’re making the right decisions. Get out of your head and make decisions automatic by asking one simple question, “Will this help me reach my goal?” If it does, then proceed.
In the end, the only bad decision is indecision, because it leads to inaction.
5. Do you multitask?
Research has proven time and time again that multitasking doesn’t work. In fact, because you’re switching between various tasks, you may lose 40 percent of your productivity.
Instead of toggling between multiple tasks just to get them done, focus on doing one thing at a time so that it’s done well and has all of your attention. Once that has been completed, you can move onto the next task.
6. How quickly do you ask for help?
Instead of waiting until it’s too late, ask for help immediately.
7. Have you used productivity measures?
Using productivity measures can help you to determine how to maximize the use of your resources. There are tools available to help you track your productivity including apps and software, although sometimes simple formulas and calculations can also do the job.
8. Do you track your time?
Tracking your time can boost your productivity since it can help you determine all of the activities that waste your time. You can start by tracking all of your activities for two weeks. As you review this information you may realize that you spend too much time watching TV, responding to emails or updating your social profiles. If so, then you can start working on ways to eliminate those time-wasters.
The team at Fortunity could assist you with your productivity when running your business or finances. Contact us today on 02 4304 8888 or at www.fortunity.com.au.