5 Steps To Maximum Productivity

Do you know that you get 80% of your results from just 20% of your time and effort and consequently 80% of your time is virtually wasted on non productive activities?. Once you realize this it is easy to take advantage and either reduce the hours you work or significantly improve your productivity.

The 80-20 rule was first discovered by Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto a hundred years ago. Using this knowledge is incredibly powerful in combating the “not enough hours in the day” mentality of today’s society.

The 80-20 rule means that in any area of our lives, literally 80 percent of our fruits are derived from only 20 percent of doing “what matters”. In other words, there is only a very small portion of all that we do each day, regardless of the situation, that brings us the “higher return”.

How can you benefit from being aware of this principle? Implementing a strategy based on the 80-20 rule can result in greater wealth and greater leisure time? Just imagine how productive you will be if 80% of your time could be spent on productive activities. You have to realise that the things that matters most should never be at the mercy of activities that matter least.

Here are 5 Steps to maximise your productivity:

1) Keep a work log for at least a week

Write down all of your activities and the time spent doing them. I appreciate this is time consuming initially but it is essential you get a true picture of your working week.

2) Analyse your activities

Separate your activities into high priority – those that produce a return or where only you have the skills to do the work – and low priority – activities others can do where the activity can be delegated to support staff. You will almost certainly find that you are spending most of your time on low-priority activities rather than activities directly providing a return. In almost all businesses these non productive activities tend to absorb time at a far greater rate than they should.

3) Delegate non productive activities

Once you can identify the low priority activities delegate as many as possible to support staff providing training where required. If necessary employ an additional member of staff to take responsibilities – the cost will be more than offset by your improved productivity. There may be a number of low priority activities you are tempted to keep. Unless it is absolutely unavoidable don’t be tempted and don’t get involved in non productive activities or your productivity will fall.

4) Calculate the time required for any remaining low priority activities

Once you have delegated all that you can, your next step is to calculate how much time you should be spending on the remaining low priority activities to make maximum use of your productive time. Do not work disproportionately hard at these low priority activities and set aside specific time each day or week to complete them.

5) Prioritise your remaining activities

Once you have cleared out the activities that do not bring you any return, it is time to turn your attention to the activities in your life that are bringing the most reward. Prioritise your activities and concentrate most of your time just on a few high-priority activities.

The objective throughout is to maximize your results from the areas of high return and to delegate those activities that have a low return. Having to spend a disproportionate amount of time on non productive activities is a major source of stress for many businessmen. Delegating these activities will therefore have the added benefit of reducing the stress you are under. It is all about doing less work for greater return.

For more success in life, whether that is more money, more time with your family or just making time for golf you should start implementing the 80-20 rule immediately. It will help your career as well as your personal life and, as a bonus, following the 80-20 rule day in and day out can make you very wealthy over the long term.

One Tool to Level Out the Peaks and Valleys in Your Marketing, Selling & Production Activities

Peaks and valleys happen in all businesses for a variety of reasons from down economic times to going crazy times. There are numerous ways to overcome this part of doing business. What I have recently discovered is the best way is the use of a marketing calendar.

Now to effectively use this strategy does require for you to know your peaks and valleys specific to revenue and productivity (think sales). In some cases, increase sales may follow productivity by anywhere from 30 days to 2 years depending upon your products or services. The goal here is to keep your people busy with productive work that generates sales while reducing errors and complaints.

First, create an excel file with the following labels for these columns in row one:

  • A – Date
  • B – Action
  • C – January
  • D – February
  • E – March
  • F – April
  • G – May
  • H – June
  • I – July
  • J – August
  • K – September
  • L – October
  • M – November
  • N – December

Next leave rows two through 6 blank for daily activities such as posting on Tweeter or Facebook, changing Linked In Profile, blogging or article marketing.

Beginning with row seven label it with the number 1 and then continue to row 37 ending with the number 31 for the days of the month.

Now start plugging in all of your current marketing activities. This might include:

  • Monthly Ezine
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Direct Mail Pieces
  • Press releases
  • Networking events

Each worksheet within the excel file then becomes a year.

The next step is even more time consuming. Start plotting in your revenue highs and lows along with your productivity based upon historical experience. What should happen is you will see where there are gaps between your marketing actions and your increase sales. Sales Training Coaching Tip: Use a different color to indicate sales lows and highs along with production lows and highs.

A marketing calendar is a stop gap measure that recognizes your potential customers and existing customers having short memories. As a small business owner, entrepreneur, independent sales professional such as a realtor, insurance agent or financial advisor, you need to create top of mind awareness or TOMA. To do this requires touching them 33 times a year according to marketing research. What I suggest is 3 touches per month between email, direct mail, phone calls and personal meetings.

By having a calendar that clearly shows your actions in a very clear and concise manner helps you to keep your arms around marketing. Of course you must also continue to track the results of your marketing that being your revenue and productivity to truly realize the value of this instrumental tool.

Ideas For Online Products

If you are looking for ideas for online products then this will help you. I am going to give you some ideas for products that you can create online that will be profitable.

Software

If you have some skills in developing software then this is a hugely popular and profitable type of online product. Everyone likes and wants software that is going to make their life easier and save them time or money. Developing software for these purposes can generate huge amounts of income providing you have done your market research and you already know that people are looking for that kind of software.

Some people sell software but they actually outsource the task and hire someone else to do the software development. If you decide to do this you just need to make sure that you have fully understood what the terms will be for that software and what kind of support you would get to fix any bugs that might become uncovered.

Membership sites

People love to be part of a community and therefore membership sites are quite popular. If you are able to provide a membership site for a targeted group of people and produce high-quality help and advice on a regular basis then you will find that you are able to generate a good recurring income.

Your membership could be an ongoing one if you have enough material to keep adding to it or it could be for a fixed period of time such as a one year long membership.

Information products

Everybody is looking for information when they go online and if you are able to package that in an easy to understand format then people will pay for that information. Information can be sold in many different formats such as written, audio or video.

You can also add coaching as an additional source of income whereby you help people and give feedback to people to help them implement specific information and help.

Resources

Another idea for popular online products is to provide some kind of resource for people to use. This could be graphics that they can use in their own business for example. Here are some more ideas of resources that you can provide:

  • articles
  • training programs
  • private label rights material
  • advertising banners
  • video presentations

There are plenty of ideas for online products and provided you have done the research to make sure you have targeted customers then you should find it profitable. One of the most important things is that you actually enjoy what you are doing as you will find it far easier to produce the products.