Productivity Hacks: What You Could Be Doing Better
1st May 2017
Despite working long and mostly productive hours, my to-do list never shortens. I continue to read, reach out to others, and implement new productivity tricks. Here is my current best thinking on GSD, a.k.a. ‘Getting Stuff Done.’
Default Diary. Management Monday has made a huge difference in my ability to work ON the business not IN it. I use the morning to plan marketing activities, review what’s coming up, develop content, plan new programs and occasionally indulge in a little daydreaming. Most Monday mornings are mobile phone and email free, business owners need dedicated off-tech time. Tuesday is talking day. I make loads of calls to clients, partners, and new people.
‘Time Blocking.’ I block out time in my diary to do specific tasks. I continue to improve my productivity by allocating a realistic amount of time and staying focused on task completion. Writing Paeds Biz is a great example. It takes x hours, I lock it in. I love it once I get started and usually kick it over pretty fluently. My monthly marketing plan is blocked for one hour on the first of the month. I have strict end of month reporting that demands two hours and is supported by checklists, social media metric reports, SEO reports, and more.
‘Colour Coding.’ No big surprise with the OT’ness of this. It allows me see where my paid, creative, management, development, partnership, marketing, admin work is all blocked out across my diary.
Productivity and time management apps. Trello is a task management favourite that I have previously written about. Slack is a great communication tool that my VA team uses, as it provides quick sms like messages. I chime into the comms as required. Dropbox is indispensable for holding shared documents, couldn’t live without it.
Accountability to others. If I tell somebody that I will have something for them by a certain time, then I am accountable and I deliver. For me this is powerful and simple.
Practice management software. There are so many choices now, 30-day free trials and some free lite versions to choose from. Practice management software is a non-negotiable must have for every single allied health business owner. It keeps all your clinical and billing information in one place, gathers data for reporting, and supports team-wide service excellence.
Notes. I dump ideas, conversations, to-dos, and so on, into an old school notebook. At the end of each week I check through it to gather and determine actions. I swap to a new book each month. Yes, I love OneNote and use it for all my deskwork plans and ideas, but I keep coming back to the cheap and cheerful notebook. Evernote is a popular alternative.
Ultimately it is not about what you use but, rather, the discipline and consistency with which you use it.
What are your productivity hacks?
This article featured in the March Edition of Paeds Biz.