“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to planning, bold action, execution excellence & focused effort.” Paul J. Meyer, Author [Motivation, Goals, Coaching, etc] Founder: “Success Motivation Institute”
Productivity Topics: Stretch Goals, Knowledge & Expertise, Initiative, Focus, Risk, Results, Consistence, Prevent.
Is there someone you know, who seems unusually productive? Someone who gets a huge amount done — without working longer hours?
Super-Productive People are in every industry. The most productive SW developers write 10x more usable code per day than the average developer, according to research. The Researcher also found that the best Chef at a Restaurant in New York can prepare 3x times as many meals as the average Chief, a fast Contractor finishes his job in 1/3 the time of the average, & the best Sales associates at Dept Stores can sell 5-10x more than average.
How do they do it? We collected data on over 7,000 people who were rated by their manager on their level of their productivity and 48 specific behaviors. Each person was also rated by an average of 11 other people, including peers, sub-ordinates, & others. We identified the specific behaviors that were correlated with high levels of productivity — the top 10% in our sample — and then performed a factor analysis to determine the most important. Seven (7) consistent factors kept coming up that identified the habits that the most productive people regularly practiced. These are listed below.
- Set Goals that “stretch” your capabilities. Think about your last day off. Did you decide to do some projects around your home? Maybe you puttered around, doing a few small tasks in a random way. Or maybe you selected a major project to tackle and were amazed at how much you were able to get done in a day. A deadline of a big project encourages you to pick up your pace and eliminate most or all distractions. There is some great magic that occurs when people become motivated by the thought of achieving a “stretch” goal. The people in our study who got the most done made setting “stretch” goals a regular habit.
- Have Knowledge & Expertise. Few things kill productivity faster than a lack of knowledge or expertise. When you know what you’re doing, you don’t have to sacrifice quality for speed. You can get things done both quickly & correctly. You don’t need to spend time searching online for a good Tutorial, or asking a colleague for advice. The most productive professionals in our study didn’t hesitate to ask for help when they needed it. But – on the other hand – they didn’t need it very often. They also intentionally acquired new skills and worked to expand their expertise. That helped them be skillful, comprehensive & rapid in their execution.
- Take the Initiative. For many people, the hardest part of getting a job done is starting. The most productive people start quickly, and usually don’t wait to ask for permission to begin. They have trained and “trust” their Intuition, because it’s easier to “Ask for forgiveness if you’re wrong, and not permission to do it. Most managers play it safe and don’t want to take the “risk” of failure, so it’s just easier for them to say No !!!
The Risk. Most super-productive types want to get things started immediately – as soon as they think of an idea. But that can get them into trouble sometimes — They might start executing a project before all parties have bought in and give their feedback. But the Super Productive’s managers rarely complain, because the results tend to speak for themselves and make them look good too.
- Focus on the Results. Most people are willing to accept responsibility for accomplishing goals and to work at a reasonable pace to achieve expected results. But there are a few people who have a great desire to accomplish results better & quicker. They are delighted to be able to check something off their To-Do List. They’re competitive — and they compete not only with their team mate, but also with themselves & their competition. They like to set new records for performance and then beat their own best.
- Always be Consistent. We all know people who are 100% reliable. If they say, “It will be done,” they will get it done. In our study, the most productive people did not see their productivity ebb & flow over time; they didn’t procrastinate – only to pull all-nighters later on. Instead, they figured out how to consistently deliver results, week after week & month after month to achieve their “stretch” goals. There was a strong motivation to their work that keep them going.
- Look for Opportunities to be Collaborative. So far a Super Productive might sound like we’re describing a person who is a brilliant individual worker, but can’t work well with others. But that’s not what our study showed. In today’s complex organizations, very little gets done by someone acting alone. Everything is highly inter-dependent & collaborative. The most productive people in our study were highly collaborative and worked well with others.
- Preventative: Anticipate & Solve problems. The most productive people are great problem-solvers. They come up with innovative solutions and accomplish work more efficiently. They also tend to anticipate obstacles and begin working on solutions in advance, so to avoid some of the problems that other people run into. Thinking about what you want to achieve and what might get in the way of your achieving it — they have found that it helps them achieve their goals better.
Conclusion: If you want to be more productive yourself, take a look at this list and ask yourself if there’s at least one thing you can do, to improve your productivity. Once you mastered that and it’s become a habit, you could move on to the next trait you want to make a habit. You’ll soon get to notice the improvement and others will also. As a good Role-Model, others may want to imitate you. That will give you the opportunity to be a Mentor to them to pass on you good habits. And when you are a Mentor, you’ll be more committed, to be a good role model – to keep up the perception that people have of you.
Comments: Do you know any other good Habits that will help people to have more Productivity?
Harvard Business Review 20 April 18 significantly enhanced by Peter/CXO