How Entrepreneurs can Increase the Productivity at Work?
You don't just need to be organised and structure-iced after you turn big. You turn big because of your structured organisation.
In my experience, efficiency is the key to better productivity. Personal efficiency can be further expanded into optimal time-management and self-bandwidth expansion. Following are some of the tools one may employ for the same:
Knowing Yourself- Though pushing ourselves towards more efficient work practices is something all entrepreneurs strive at, I realised that knowing your weaknesses actually turns them into advantages. This is something I learned being part of Entrepreneurs’ Organization. As a board member I would often procrastinate tasks till the last minute then be frantic over the deadline. Then, over one of the self-knowing workshops I discovered this about myself that my productivity increased manifolds near a deadline. So I started dividing my work over smaller deadlines. It now gives me smaller projects to complete and makes the task seem easier to finish.
Manage Stress- Our ability to succeed largely depends on our capacity for stress. Appropriate stress is the key to releasing enough adrenaline to spur on optimal efficiency. But there is a fine line between stress that spurs and stress that overwhelms. The key is to know your own limits and stay inside those.
Letting Go- Another huge hurdle I as an entrepreneur faced was letting go of control and being too hands-on. But I also realised that was trapping my energies which would have been more winningly employed over some other, more lucrative tasks.
Make Lists- Penning things down helps like no other tool. Putting all your tasks, however big or small, on a to-do list and then striking off the jobs accomplished is immensely rewarding and inspires to tackle the tasks still pending.
My to-do list is chronologically divided in 3 parts: Things to be accomplished in the next few days, things to be accomplished in the next few months and things that to be accomplished in the next years. And there is one day a week set-aside to review that list. The perspective that third part gives over the shorter to-do lists is life changing. It also gives me a map of my work and personal life.
Spending Time Away from Work- It may sound counter-intuitive but it is an important tool. Indulging a hobby or simply meditating (especially on those long working days) frees up so much refreshed energies that are then directed back towards work.
Taking Faster Decisions- I realised over a period of time that I spent large part of my energies second guessing myself scrutinising the decisions already taken. More often than not, the decisions first taken turned out to be ok. The following stress, then, would mostly be redundant and counter-productive.
Pimping the Workspace- Having a good-looking office gives me a sense of accomplishment and inspires me to come to work. There is a particular work of Art I really like and glancing at it every now and then gives me a moment of unscheduled pleasure.
Structure-Ice; Organise; Declutter.
I was once on a panel where I was questioned during a Q&A session as to why, in my industry, the successful chains were all coming from the South- region but not so successfully from the Northern side. I was caught off-guard when the MD of the hinted South Indian chain came to my rescue. He said the difference is only one- Organised and Unorganised. And that's pretty exact. You don't just need to be organised and structure-iced after you turn big. You turn big because of your structured organisation.
This exercise eats a lot of non-revenue generating work time but is pivotal for especially a smaller scale establishment which may deem it unimportant for them yet. But it also ends up expanding your personal and professional bandwidth to another level.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house
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