If you’ve ever spent a day ‘doing’ yet at the end of it feel like you’ve not ‘done’ much, read on to make sure you get a result every day.
You know how it is — the day(s) can often pass and you feel like you’ve done a lot, but you don’t have much to show for it! You’ve spent your time fighting fires rather than spending time on the productive tasks that bring you results. Frustrating isn’t it?
What you need is a plan to follow so you can be effective and efficient with your time so you can feel you’ve been productive at the end of your work. That usually comes down to concentrating on tasks that create impact and income. Yet these tasks are often the ones our speakers, authors and coaches shy away.
They feel too hard — the marketing and sales efforts are not what you like doing, it’s the delivery and the fun creative stuff that really appeals. But that’s not where you actually get the core results that help you continue running the business.
There are other things you can do to help you as well as learn to focus on the ‘right things’. Identifying the apps, software and people who can support you to build a business ON YOUR TERMS is a key piece of feeling productive — but you still have to manage that process and ensure you are getting what you want. And THAT is another thing we find — most of you don’t enjoy the process of checking that the business is running well and that outsourced support is actually working the way you want it to and is producing results.
So why are you so frustrated?
We hear so many people tell us that they are busy being busy but they don’t seem to make headway or get the results that they are after.
Here are some reasons for this:
- You could be spending time on tasks that aren’t productive — but they are what you feel confident in doing
- You don’t know what you don’t know, so you aren’t focusing on activities that will give you the result you are wanting
- You aren’t measuring or managing your time
- You aren’t supported with apps, software or people to outsource the jobs you hate or streamline your efforts
- You have people in place but you are not making the most of them
- You are not using numbers to guide your activities
- You are focusing on the things you know how to do because that at least makes you feel good
When you’re constantly busy being busy it can be really disheartening. You feel like you are putting so much effort in, yet you are not getting the results. Here’s how to make the most of your days.
You must assess what you are focusing on
It’s vital you take stock; you need to know what’s actually going on. So the first thing we want to assess is what you are currently focusing on and doing. Having a plan to follow is imperative. It helps you do, even if you don’t enjoy it. It stops you having to THINK UP what to do day to day, and instead means that you just need to DO because you’ve already done the thinking!
Here are some questions to help you know if you’ve done that:
- Do you have monthly outcomes which are broken down into weekly tasks?
- Do you have a monthly marketing plan?
- Are you tracking what is working (e.g. via engagement, numbers of followers etc)?
- Do you have sales targets and strategies to meet them?
- Do you set yourself a (small!) daily to do list that work towards your monthly goals?
- Are you using apps, software or freelancers to help with outsourcing tasks?
A 90 Day plan is the key to being productive
The most important thing to do is to know your 90 day goal and then reverse engineer it every month, every week and every day to achieve it. That keeps you on track, and even the small tasks you do can feel like they are productive because they are in service of the main goal.
To give you an example, it took us 3 months to create our Power Up Your Purpose Course — an online course for speakers, authors and coaches, set to help them identify, articulate and monetise their purpose. We know it was needed, so we set that as our 90 Day Goal and worked it back into what needed to happen. The big picture version went like this:
- Our aim for month 1 was to plan the content, write the scripts and create the workbooks and supporting material.
- The second month we filmed and edited the content, and outlined the marketing launch plan.
- The third month we uploaded the content, integrated our CRM system & tested all the tech & payment gateway, whilst also creating all the marketing materials we’d need.
Each week every month was broken down into smaller goals and daily activities. These should become you priorities on your to do list… along with space to deal with the unexpected stuff that comes up with the day to day running of the business.
You’ll notice that we didn’t LAUNCH the course in that 90 days, we only prepared and got ready to do so. The launch phase was then part of the NEXT 90 days. So part of feeling productive is to ensure that you have a focused intention for your 90 days, so that you are ALWAYS doing something in your day that is contributing to that. It means that you’ll stop feeling that you are busy being busy, because you know you’ve done something (and likely more than one!) in the service of what will increase your impact and influence.
As a little help to this, it really is useful once you know what you are working on and what you need or can start to outsource, to know what the common apps and software is that can help you. We have a list of these that we recommend to speakers, authors and coaches to help outsource work and streamline their efforts. You can download our app directory here for free. it will help you run your business in the most effective and efficient way.
Do come and join us inside The Connection Hub, our group specifically made for speakers, authors and coaches, so you can connect with us and get many more tips like this.