As Henry David Thoreau pointed out: “It is not enough to be busy, so are the ants! The question is, what are we busy about?”
I’ve seen so many nonprofits fail to succeed simply because they are too busy. Activity is not achievement. Being busy doesn’t mean you’re accomplishing anything.
Here are a few tricks I use to stay efficient, productive and on-target:
1. I write strategies and plans starting with a vision of the end result I desire. Working without a strategy and a plan is like sailing a boat without a keel and a map.
2. I monitor what I do. I once wrote down everything I did in a single day minute by minute. It was tedious yet revealing. It helped me see how I wasted and misappropriated my time. Try it. I dare you!
3. I make lots of lists. Then I prioritize what I should do now versus later according to my strategy and plans.
4. I delegate. I do what I am good at doing and let others do the rest— even if it costs money.
5. I make self-imposed deadlines. In football, most of the points get scored in the fourth quarter. Deadlines create a sense of urgency.
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