Today we have a guest editorial from Andy Warren.
I think being highly productive is a tough goal, but a worthy one. It’s a way to do more with less, to spend more time on things I enjoy, less time on things that I have to do but don’t generate any revenue. That’s not to say I reach that goal most days, but I aspire to it!
I define being highly productive as doing the right work in the most efficient way. Defining what is the right work is hard, although it gets a lot easier if you’re writing a check for the work! It’s easy, and human, to spend time on stuff that may not matter a lot, or matter at all. But whether it’s the right work or not the other part is to do it in the most efficient way possible, find ways to do something in less time, or to do in the same time with a better and more predictable result
How do you do that at work, in your zone of influence? Start by doing things to improve your own efficiency. Write that job you’ve been meaning to write, build the documentation to cover emergencies so you can take an uninterrupted vacation, revisit what you spend time on and why – your own time and motion study. Then move on to trying to remove or reduce tasks that don’t really make sense for your or your employer within your team or department.
What is the ROI for you? Over time you’ll become more valuable, because you get more done, and because your tasks run smoothly. You’ll remove some stress, both by reducing the amount of repetitive work and by knowing that the results are always dependable. You’ll also be building within yourself an openness to change tempered with an understanding of how to make those changes – and why sometimes it’s harder than it looks.
Got a story about becoming more productive? Share and let’s talk about it, you might well help someone help improve their productivity, and that’s just bonus ROI!