Week 7 of the eight week plan. Do the right things and do them right

Written by  //  December 11, 2012  //  Daily Juice  //  No comments

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So here we are in week 7 of the 8 week plan to make 2013 super-profitable.

It’s also, of course, less than two weeks until Christmas so it’s a time when some of us are feeling even more frazzled than normal. Certainly we have too much to do and too little time to do it in.

So it’s a good week to look at how we can get more done in less time.

Last week we looked at outsourcing – buying in a bit of someone else’s time. Today we’ll look at how to make the best use of your time.

Effective and efficient

This is the Holy Grail of getting more done in less time: being mega-effective and mightily- efficient.


Being effective means working on the right things. Like making your product rather than talking about making it.


Being efficient means doing stuff speedily and without mistakes. Like making your product in less time but still error free.


Here are five questions to help you be more effective in 2013. You can pop your answers in the worksheet here.


  1. How much time each week am I going to spend planning my business? In other words how much time are you are going to spend thinking about stuff like:
    1. what am I going to do next to get new customers?
    2. have I got the right product range?
    3. am I distributing my product in the best way?
    4. should I be outsourcing some work?
    5. is my pricing right?


Tip: at least 1 or 2 hours a week and block it out in your diary to make yourself do it


  1. How am I going to check that I am spending my time on the right stuff?


Tip: try keeping a timesheet – if you record, honestly, where you spend your time you’ll know whether it was time well spent!


  1. How will I know whether new projects are the best use of my time?


Tip: treat every project as an experiment – so if you have an idea of a new way to market your product decide at the outset what a good outcome looks like, decide how long you are going to give it a go for, and at the end of that time, measure it! Did it work?!


  1. How am I going to choose between which tasks to work on as there is always more to do than can be done!?


Tip: try a simple rule such as “I’ll pick the ones that earn me money over the ones where it’s harder to see how they contribute to my business”


  1. What one thing am I going to stop doing?


Tip: this is the best way of getting more effective…..decide that you have to stop doing one thing! It needn’t be a big thing, something small and simple could work well – for example ‘I’m not going to look at Facebook until lunchtime”


Here are two great tips to help you be more efficient

  1. Put the brakes on mistakes

A quick way to make your business less error prone is:

  • Think about all the mistakes that your business made last year (eg, double invoicing, not invoicing, late invoicing, under charging, sending the wrong product out, losing an order, buying stock that no-one wanted, etc etc) Tip – mistakes are wastes of time or money…..and are not necessarily mistakes a customer would notice.
  • Write the mistakes down
  • Ask this question ‘For each mistake what one thing could I have put in place to stop this happening?”
  • So an answer might be that “just before product leaves my premises I should check the invoice has been done”. Checks are good! It can feel a little odd if you’re just checking on yourself but it’s worth it. It’s like patting your pocket to confirm you have your keys before you close the front door.
  • If you’re short on time just pick the three biggest mistakes you made last year and put ‘checks’ or other processes in place to stop those mistakes happening this year!
  1. Don’t get sidetracked

There’s no better advice than this!

Doing ‘the right stuff right’ isn’t hard but it does take a bit of self discipline, and, sigh, I know how hard that can be!

To help me with my discipline I have a friend who keeps me on track. She doesn’t do much – well actually she does nothing…..I just tell her what I’m going to get done each week and when the week’s over I tell her that I’ve done it. Pretty damn simple!

Articulating it and ‘promising’  that I will do stuff makes me do it – and I do the same back for her and it makes her do it. We’ve been keeping each other on track for years and it’s fun and it works!


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