Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Maximum impact

Time to read this post: 2 minutes

I spoke with a uber-mentor on what are his life lessons in juggling multiple priorities with limited time. His responses are very much in line with Tim Ferris's 4 hour work week

1. Carry one thing in your top pocket

Those who manage to have huge impact make progress on a small number of big things. They know the 1-2 (max) game-changing issues. This gives them huge mental focus and allows their creativity to go into one thing. This singularity causes all their creativity to be channeled into this one project. These people understand the difference betwee urgent and important tasks

2. You have a requirement to do only what only you can do

This was told by a CEO client. He said that is your duty to lead on a small number of projects and work out how you can get others to help you on your quest. This involves a process of benign abdication to others. Consider what you can get away with not doing.

3. Phenomenal workrates

The best people batch their work and are able to work at an extremely high rate. This involves turning off email for many hours; guarding your calendar; not attending every meeting; sending people "if/then" emails to get out the back & forth; blocking out time on your calendar intentionally. It is a question of priority: choose carefully what you do first each day as it will expand to fill the day. Start the day by checking email and you may never surface again.

4. Life as an 'Energy Balance Sheet'

Work life balance is the wrong goal. Rather than seeking to minimize the number of hours works, seek to rejoice in an interesting-rich-fulfilled life. Think of sustainability as an 'Energy balance sheet'. Think of the energy created versus the energy destroyed. If you end up having to work for hours but in a way that is hugely energizing, it's probably a worthwhile trade-off
Tough questions
A. What is the one project that you should be in your top pocket right now
B. What is it that only you can do? Where do you add unique value?
C. What should you be starting the day by doing? What will this look like tomorrow?
D. What is the status of your life's Energy Balance Sheet? Are you creating net worth?

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