A Special Checklist To Increase Your Efficiency

So many entrepreneurs waste huge amounts of time.

They spend far too long doing unimportant things and not enough time on the few vital opportunities.

If you’d like to improve your effectiveness at work and take your business achievement to a whole new level, have a look at the checklist I’ve prepared below.

It has 15 of the most important ways to increase your productivity and efficiency.

Which ones are you already doing? Which one should you start doing?

Efficiency is a science, but it’s one that very few people have ever really studied. Yet to be highly productive is one of the most priceless skills that you could ever have.

  1. Are you clear on what your 2 most important roles are in your business?
  2. Do you allocate sufficient time each week to those roles?
  3. Are you so clear on your 1 year goals, that you can recite them whenever asked?
  4. Do you always prepare a To Do List before you start work?
  5. Do you do your morning email only after you have got something important done?
  6. Do you work in blocks of uninterrupted time?
  7. Do you have all your personal, business, home and family tasks all written down in a single place so that you can examine them easily?
  8. Do you schedule time in your calendar to do your most important tasks?
  9. Do you rush unimportant jobs?
  10. Do you have a clean and clear desk?
  11. Are your files organized and regularly purged?
  12. Do you de-clutter your work environment every week?
  13. Do you prioritize your To Do List so that you do the most valuable tasks first? (Not necessarily the most urgent).
  14. When you organize a meeting, do you set a finish time?
  15. Do you allocate time each week preparing your next week?

Keep this checklist handy on your desk, and read it at least once a day.

Efficiency is far too important to be left to chance.

The Fastest Way To Double Your Productivity

If you’re like most entrepreneurs, you have one really big problem:

Getting the important work done while you’re being constantly interrupted.

It’s a huge issue. Phone calls, emails, staff popping in, meetings. It’s amazing we get anything valuable done at all when we are interrupted this much.

So what’s the solution?

Well when I’m coach senior executives and entrepreneurs, I teach a super powerful multi step system that significantly increases your productivity, but today I’d like to give you one important technique that can really increase your output and your income.

Leave the office often.

Work in coffee shops, the park, at home, a museum, anywhere that is quick to get to and easy to work in.

I suggest setting aside either 1 or 2 days every week where your staff know that you’ll be away but working – at least for half the day.

It will feel weird at first. But when you see how much more you get done you’ll be hooked.

You see, the office can be one of the most inefficient places to work of all. There’s so much paperwork, complexity and bureaucracy that occurs in the typical office, that it’s really easy to get sucked into doing stuff all day long that doesn’t really matter.

Get out of there. Escape. Calm down. And start focusing, uninterrupted, on what really counts in your business.

The other great benefit of working away from the office is how it affects your creative thinking. When you’re in a different environment you start thinking different thoughts. Novel solutions pop into your head. New ways of looking at things emerge. Breakthroughs occur because your mind is refreshed and rejuvenated by different surroundings.

Just try it, you’ll see.

Don’t spend your life chained to your desk. You’ll work far better ( and feel much better) when you escape the office, at least once a week.

The Most Important Skill A Business Owner Should Have

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a super performer in business?

Professor Angela Duckworth has. In fact she has spent decades of her life studying super successful people in business, sports, science and the arts. And her discoveries are extremely surprising.

Professor Duckworth has found that it’s not luck, or amazing talent that makes a winner, it’s something far more mundane.

It’s what she calls ‘Grit’.

What is grit? It’s maintaining passion and perseverance for your long term goals.

Let’s look at the three parts of Grit, one by one. And ask yourself how you score on each part.

1. Unusual Perseverance

Duckworth’s research shows that highly successful people usually did not find it easy. They had to overcome countless setbacks, failures and even disasters before they triumphed.

This is the opposite of what many entrepreneurs think. Many believe that if their business isn’t going well that there must be something wrong.

Not at all. Even the most successful companies experience almost constant problems that must be overcome. You should expect big problems on a weekly basis and make up your mind that you will continue on despite the stress that they may cause. 

Very few business owners have this attitude.

2. Continuous Passion

Grit is not just about not giving up, it’s also about staying really enthusiastic and attracted by the goals that you set.

Plenty of people keep plodding on for years on their goals, but so often they have lost the spark of passion that many times makes the difference between achieving success and failure.

If you want to make it big in your field, you must continually work on enhancing how passionate you are about what you’re doing. It will dramatically affect your results.

3. Serious Long Term Goal Setting

Significant success takes time. Often a long, long time. 

Duckworth can show mountains of examples of top performers whose road to victory took ages – certainly far longer than they expected.

The trouble is that the media is always featuring stories about people who achieved huge success almost instantly – like the 20 year old internet genius who makes $100 million within two years.

That kind of example makes many entrepreneurs lose heart when they’re having trouble succeeding in their own enterprise.

Don’t fall into this thought trap. Almost all great businesses took decades to develop. So it’s of paramount importance that you set major, exciting and long term goals and stick with them for the long term.

As Angela Duckworth’s research shows, long term persistence while maintaining passion often trumps even great talent and even huge amounts of money.

It’s worth spending a few minutes thinking about how you can lift yourself in the three areas of perseverance, passion and long term goal setting.

Grit is a simple concept, but it will make a huge difference to your life if you make it a central part of your character.

The Year Is Officially Half Over. How’s Your Business Going?

This week marks the end of the first 6 months of the year.

So I have some questions for you:

  • Are you on track to have a magnificent business year?
  • Are you making the kind of money you expected when the year began?
  • Do you have loads of leads coming to you?
  • Or, is the year so far not nearly as good as you’d hoped?

If you’re not absolutely delighted with your progress, then you need to remember two things:

  1. You better start doing things very differently if you want to rescue the year.
  2. It’s not too late to make this year a fabulous one.

Here are some tips for taking your business to a whole new level in the second half of the year.

1. Stop Wasting So Much Time On Things That Don’t Increase Your Income

Shorten the meetings. Don’t take every call. Work away from the office two days a week. Do anything you can to allow you to focus on what really counts – bringing in customers.

Time and time again I see entrepreneurs doing busy work all day long, but doing precious little to actually bring in mulla.

2. Get Super Clear On The Two Things That Bring In The Most Money For You

Of all the stuff you do in a month, what two activities really bring in money? Most entrepreneurs are simply not crystal clear on the answer to that question.

As a result, they don’t do much of those two crucial income producing activities.

Sit down and take a few minutes to work out the answer, then post that answer on a sign that you can see all day long. That way you’re more likely to keep coming back to those priceless two actions that make you most of your money.

3. Work On Massively Increasing Your Desire

Too many people start coasting and taking it easy once their business is doing okay.

Big mistake. Maintaining an attitude of hunger and desire is vital if you want to make your company great.

When you have strong desire, you attract more clients. When you have strong desire, you focus more. When you have strong desire, luck tends to go your way.

Don’t minimise the importance of personal desire for business success. Work daily on increasing it and everything will change for the better.

Three simple concepts. But each extremely effective in improving your results.

It’s not too late to have an awesome year. But you really must act now.

The 2 Things All Great Entrepreneurs Focus On

A lot of business owners are totally unsure how to grow their business.

But in my view there are only two primary areas you need to focus on.

1. Innovation

How much new stuff are you trying?

The sad thing is, most entrepreneurs do very little experimenting. Incredibly, a lot of business owners do pretty much the same things for 10 or 20 years!

Because they don’t innovate, they keep getting the same mediocre results, year after year.

Look, here’s the truth. You don’t need to be a genius to succeed in business, you just have to try lots of stuff. Believe me, as long as you keep trying new ideas in sales, marketing, positioning and pricing, some of it is going to work big time.

When was the last time you innovated? Great entrepreneurs innovate all the time.  You can see it here:

2. Optimization

The other key area you need to focus on is Optimization – making what you already have work better.

Once again, average entrepreneurs do very little optimizing. If something is working okay, they tend to just leave it. This is crazy, as it’s quite possible that you could double the effectiveness of what you’re doing if you kept on making small improvements to it.

Most of you could be making twice as much money if you just started optimizing what you’re doing – changing a headline, finessing a sales presentation, improving what you staff say on the phone, etc. 

These are all easy things to do but can colossally increase how much money you make.

I explain more about this in a special video. Check it out here:

Innovation and Optimization: the only two areas you really need to focus on to build a super profitable business.

Are you doing enough of them?

Checklist for an Awesome Business

Just how good is your business?

Is it only average? Or is it something really special?

I mentor entrepreneurs all over the world, so I get to see inside a lot of businesses.

Over time, I’ve realized that there are 7 parts of a business that you have to get right, if you want to make a huge amount of money.

That’s why I’ve prepared this special 7 point checklist that you can use to work out whether your business is heading for greatness, or whether there are some areas you need to improve. You can get the checklist here.

Few businesses are perfect, so don’t be upset if you find that your business doesn’t score highly on each area.

But please go through this checklist carefully, because in it are the keys to creating the business of your dreams.

Check it out here.

PS: In my opinion, point 3 is the most important of all. Make sure you get at least that one right. View the checklist here.

Success Secrets of an Elite Pilot

One of the best ways to be more successful in business is to study elite sports performers.

Even though their job is very different from the business world, the best performers in sport all practice techniques that help them achieve at the highest level.

Techniques that we could use to perform better at work, and make a lot more money.

This week I was studying Matt Hall, one of the world’s greatest air race pilots and a member of the Red Bull International Air Racing team.

He’s got 3 great training techniques he uses to perform at the highest level of racing, which could easily be used by entrepreneurs to succeed more often.

I’ve summed up Hall’s training techniques in this short video.

If you want to be great in business, don’t just look at the business world for inspiration. Look everywhere.

Even in the air.

Check out this elite race pilot’s methods for excellence, in this video:

8 Questions That Will Massively Improve Your Business

Most entrepreneurs are guilty of one very big error.

They work too much and think too little.

I admire the work part, but unless you match it with sufficient time thinking, then you will just get exhausted and frustrated, not rich.

You need to allocate time each week to thinking.

Thinking about what? I suggest you focus on these two broad areas:

1. Where Is My Business Now?

Unless you’re clear about what’s truly happening in your business – what’s working and what’s not, you will never be able to radically improve it. Clarity is the first step on the path to excellence.

2. What Can I Do This Month To Improve That?

Not what can you do this year, or sometime in the future, that’s way too vague and it lets you off the hook. What tangible actions can you take in the next 30 days to move the company forward?

Now inside those 2 broad areas of questioning lie many other questions you can ask to really improve your business – and your own performance within it.

In this short video I take you through the 8 most powerful questions you can ask to transform your business. Check it out here.

I really recommend you set aside 30 minutes a week in your calendar purely dedicated to quiet reflection on these 8 questions.

After all, 30 minutes is almost no time at all – every business owner can spare that amount of time. Yet that one 30 minute period could change your business forever.

Just one new strategy that you conceive during that short time window could lead to a new product, a totally different direction for your business or an entirely new income stream.

But if you don’t spend consistent time thinking, and all you do is work, then you risk getting no breakthroughs at all and continuing on for years with very little change – and very little new wealth.

Check out the 8 questions that can transform your business here

– they could be a total game changer for you and your business.

Here they are.

How To Stay Calm Under Pressure

I’m sure you’ll agree, business is stressful a lot of the time.

Yet I know of no business school that trains people on how to handle the stress of business and entrepreneurship.

Don’t you think that’s crazy? After all, if we can can stay cool and calm under pressure at work, we will:

* Perform better

* Make more money

* Enjoy work (and life) a lot more.

With that in mind, here are some highly effective ways to stay calm and Zen, even when everyone around you is losing it.

1. Center Yourself Before You Go Into The Office.

Take a few minutes each morning before before you head into work, to remind yourself of your goals, to focus on the kind of person you want to be today, and to visualise yourself performing well during the day.

Doing this takes hardly any time, yet it dramatically improves your outlook, mood, quality of actions and quality of human interactions. And it makes you much calmer and focused.

2. See Yourself As A Master Problem Solver.

Your self identity greatly affects your performance. According to renowned performance coach Dr Jason Selk, a positive self identity is a super crucial component of a highly achieving person. Yet few of us choose to work on our self perception so that it serves us, rather than hinders us.

One great way to perform better and stay calm at work is to start seeing yourself as a master problem solver. After all, problem solving is perhaps the most necessary skill in business. We are beset by challenges every day at work and if we perceive them as major obstacles they can really get us down.

But if we continually make part of our self identity that we are master problem solvers, then when problems arise we are more likely to handle them with confidence, serenity and efficiency.

In the short video below, I talk about two other powerful ways to stay calm under pressure at work. You can view the video here.

Put these 4 strategies to work in your life and you’ll find that not only will you grow your business and career faster, you’ll enjoy each day vastly more.

Yes, we are in business to make money, but we are also here on Earth to enjoy each day. And too many of us let the daily stresses of business take that joy away.

View my video on this and you’ll know the 4 techniques that can radically increase your calm and happiness at work. Here’s the link to the video.

3 Questions That Can Triple Your Income

The biggest weakness of most entrepreneurs is how they are using their time.

When coaching business owners we frequently see that they are wasting an enormous amount of hours on low value activities.

Are you one of them?

Well there are 3 key questions you can ask yourself to find out whether you are maxmizing your time or wasting it at work.

1. What’s The Highest And Best Use Of My Time?

What are the 2 or 3 activities you do that really make a difference to how much money your business makes?

Amazingly very few people have ever asked themselves this. Yes they vaguely know what are useful things to do at work; but they aren’t crystal clear about what really, really matters.

In this area the old 80/20 Principle really reigns supreme. Almost nothing you do grows your business, most of it has minimal impact. So unless you identify what really counts you will spend the next 20 years getting lower results than you are capable of.

Here is a list of activities that commonly increase the revenue of companies:

* Calling potential customers.

* Emailing/ mailing potential customers

* Staying in touch with potential customers

* Creating ads to promote what you sell

* Finessing you sales presentation

* Testing different marketing techniques

* Getting PR for your business

* Contacting old customers

* Developing new products and services 

* Studying how to grow your business faster

* Improving the performance of key staff

There are more of course, but if you were doing just the ones above your company would be making wads of money.

The trouble is, almost all entrepreneurs are spending hardly any time on doing this income increasing stuff.

Instead, they are being consumed by seemingly urgent but really relatively inconsequential tasks.

Which brings us to the second critical question:

2. What Are My Time Traps?

What are the low value things you are doing that are taking up much of the day? And who are the people who are stealing your valuable hours?

Together these constitute your time traps that are reducing your income, slowing your business down and limiting how wealthy and successful you become in your life.

Unless you take the time to observe and analyze your days and identify these insidious time wasters, you are doomed to average achievement levels.

This brings us to the third critical question to ask.

3. What Am I Going To Do About This?

It’s not enough to merely become aware of the problem (although awareness is a level that is beyond what most entrepreneurs have achieved). You need to now decide what tangible changes you are going to make to your week to combat the time suckers and dramatically increase time spent on the ultra valuable activities.

How can you stop certain people interrupting you?

How can you reduce average meeting times?

Can you schedule an amount of time each day to focus on what’s really going to move the needle for your company?

Can you do your email in 2 or 3 blocks each day?

Can you work away from your office a day or two per week on these important tasks?

Only when you make new rules and restructure your week so that you’re spending large amounts of time on income increasing activities, will you take your company to the next level and start making really big money.

Why not take ten minutes now to generate answers to these immensely important questions, then act immediately on what you discover.

There’s no better use of your time than working out the best use of your time.