Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The 80/20 Rule of Being In The Now

We are still basically at the start of the year so in an a way I am looking back at 2008, In a down economy one area I am looking at is being in the now, the moment, and when I stop being in the moment how I waste my time.

Waist might be too strong a word, but I must say I have knocked myself on the side of the head some days when I see what I have accomplished over what I could have gotten done. Looking at wasted time and missed opportunities. Sound familiar?

Tinkering with social media sites with little to no payoff
Projects started but not pushed through to completion
Direction less surfing, tweaking and chatting
Discussions and enthusiasm for potential opportunities that go nowhere
Etc etc etc

I don’t want to be bashing myself or you as to wasting time because in these efforts I have achieved some good stuff. I have gained some great knowledge. The important thing is not to dwell on mistakes but learn from them. So I need to plan for productivity. For getting more organized, and forward thinking as to outcomes of time spent.

The first step towards this plan is I have started abandon some SM sites as an active participant in. Some of these just don’t have the kind of prospects and clients I am looking for so why be there. I don’t need the ego rub. Extra SM sites just seem to be a terrible waste of time and a distraction towards me and my company’s goals for the year.

I’m also going to take more breaks, turn off the computer at 5:00 or 6:00 PM and not turn it on again until I start work the next morning. Being online and available 24-7 is dumb and not needed.

Besides I am in training for a Marathon in 14 weeks and don’t have the time.

This and other common sense stuff will help, but the core of my plan will be to focus on what directly or indirectly produces results.

Monitor where my time goes, plan my time better
Trim the 20% of non-productive tasks that leach 80% of my time
Focus on the 20% of tasks that produce 80% of revenue and results
As you can see, I am aiming to base my work around the 80-20 concept.

This 80-20 rule, or Pareto Principle, suggests that a small percentage of your effort brings most of your results, while a much smaller part of your achievement comes from where most of your time goes. Zeroing in on the time-draining aspects versus those productive tasks could be a quick and easy fix. It is identifying the correct targets for promotion or deletion that is the tricky part.

This is where my time log will come in. I just need to follow it better.

Larson note: I am sure there are other things we can do to make 2009 more productive than 2008, share your advice, let me know your tips, articles or links. My main push for the first half of the year is to be where I am, not where I want to be.

There is an old story I remember that said:

Somewhere there is a man out fishing with his son thinking about work and somewhere there is a man at work dreaming about going out fishing with his son.

Howard Larson
Larson & Associates
Target Marketing & Telesales Professionals for new account acquisition
Making good businesses great and great businesses even better


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