The universal challenge of every startup founder is to get everything done that needs to get done, and still have a life.
Even outside of business, everyone wants to accomplish more, while working less. I’ve been a student of these techniques for some time, but recently I saw a great summary that seems to pull all the key principles together.
Steve Robbins, known on the Internet as the Get-It-Done Guy, just published his book “9 Steps to Work Less and Do More,” which outlines his strategies. These are not aimed specifically at entrepreneurs, but certainly can be applied there as follows:
With each of these steps, you will reclaim more control of your business and your life. You will find yourself honing in on the things that actually move the startup forward and make you happy, and learning the skills you need to resist the rest.
Figure out what's really important to you as an entrepreneur. For most, it's following a passion to show customers your better solution.
Live your lifestyle, do what you love, and identify your top priorities. Then you will get things done, and it won't even seem like work.
Procrastination is a killer when it comes to being effective. One of the best ways to stop procrastinating is to break things down into small chunks, using tiny steps to move forward.
Break time into pieces. When there's an end in sight, it's a lot easier to get down to business.
mobile phones, laptops, and other electronic devices are supposed to give users additional freedom, but far too often, they create time traps.
Separate yourself from technology on a regular schedule to not allow a machine's interruptions to set your day's agenda.
Many people confuse 'organised' with 'neat.' In fact, organised means a place for everything and everything in its place.
When you stumble over something that doesn't have a place, either throw it away or make a place for it. If you don't have any more room, throw something away -- don't rent a storage unit.
Stop doing what isn't working so you'll have the time to optimise the rest of what you do.
Some of the best ways to optimise include using team feedback to identify blind spots that could be limiting effectiveness; recognising when it's time to call in an expert to get the job done; and listening to your own advice.
Build a network of contacts to allow you to harness the power of others' strengths. Superficial relationships don't help.
Giving is the best and quickest way to strengthen a relationship. Conflict takes energy to sustain, so work to prevent conflicts from arising, and work to end conflicts quickly that do arise.
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