If you have read my latest texts, you already know that I am constantly looking for a way to optimize my working day in order to draw as much as possible from it, on the one hand, and not to achieve a lot of tasks, deadlines and commitments, on the other. Today, I would like to remind you of three simple rules that I apply myself, which make it possible for me to work better, faster and more efficiently. These are three definitely trivial actions, but I know from my own experience that we quite often forget about them. Especially when we get into a whirlpool of various activities and… multitasking (which recently ruins my life). Ready?
Set yourself a goal
I deliberately write not goals, but goals. One. As well as the priority, there is one. In a not so old text I wrote about how it happened that the priorities were given plurality, so if you are curious, I would like to refer you. But back to the goal. We often take various measures that do not have a clear purpose. That is completely meaningless! Unfortunately, my observations show that this phenomenon is quite common.
In my recent recruitment, I asked the candidates how they see themselves in 5 years’ time, where they want to be. The majority could not answer that question! 5 years old? Many people do not know what they will do in a year or two. Yet, without a concrete development plan, we will not be able to say whether the fact that we are here and dealing with the issues in question will serve us in the future or whether, on the contrary, we should change jobs as soon as possible.
I have noticed that more and more people are living for a moment without planning or carrying out evaluations of their own. Yet the goal is the basis for effective action. What is this like for me? Take the agency that I run, for example. I have set myself the goal of doubling my customer base in 2018. What will I do to achieve this? I will focus my activities on three areas: more efficient customer acquisition (at present, most of them come from a recommendation, rarely from Google), placing more emphasis on promoting the agency on the Internet (now we hardly conduct promotional campaigns at all) and ensuring retention (that customers are with us for as long as possible). Any other activity which is not related to the achievement of my goal should be eliminated or delegated to employees/business partners.
I only need to ask myself once in a while: does what he is currently doing bring me closer to achieving his goal? If the answer is YES, super, everything is fine. If the answer is NO, I should give up my task as soon as possible and concentrate on the activities that will take me back to the right path.
Without targets, we are heading nowhere. It is worth remembering this and constantly checking whether we are going according to the plan and previous assumptions.
Learn to speak NO
This is my problem, which I have been facing for many years. It is a simple matter, but the inability to refuse may be an excellent obstacle to achieving goals, business development or effective functioning. That’s how I had it, I couldn’t say I wouldn’t do something. When someone asked me for help with the project, writing an article, giving a lecture or taking part in an event, I usually agreed. I could not say no. For a number of reasons. I never wanted to be perceived as one who cannot be relied on, trusted in oneself, or who does not want to share one’s knowledge. I agreed, because I was convinced that I was doing the right thing, that it would make people like and appreciate me more.
How naive it was. People are asking you for help on various issues because – I am sorry, but I hope nobody will be offended – most of them are too lazy to solve a problem on their own. And if they ask you to give lectures or take part in a workshop, they mainly think about realizing theirs – not yours! – objectives. Now that has changed. Before I agree to anything that I do, I always wonder whether it will translate into my achieving my goals. If not, I refuse. It’s hard, my time is the most important resource for me and I should learn to respect it first. Refusing to participate in additional projects has made it possible – I say! – I have more time to carry out the activities that are most valuable to me. And that pays off.
Delegate tasks
If I am talking about the problem of refusal, I cannot fail to mention the problem of delegation. This is my biggest weakness, which leads to a total ruin – both psychological and physical. For many years, while still working for the corporation, I was convinced that I could and should do everything myself. Since I was in business, I have had an even greater problem with delegating tasks. These are the activities I am learning for today, and the word