Operations Toolbox

Elevating Your Game: The Solopreneur's Guide to Boosting Profits through Productivity

October 14, 2023 Tonya D. Episode 10
Operations Toolbox
Elevating Your Game: The Solopreneur's Guide to Boosting Profits through Productivity
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Struggling to reach your revenue goals? Ready to supercharge your productivity? This episode is jam-packed with insights to help you do just that. 

We'll be exploring the importance of setting clear quarterly goals and how this can dramatically improve your productivity as a solorpreneur. We'll also dive into the 4D method - a simple yet powerful tool for managing your to-do list and staying laser-focused on your key objectives. If you've got a vision for where you want your business to be in the next three to five years, you don't want to miss this!

 Whether you're just starting out or already running a successful business, these game-changing productivity tips can help you massively amplify your efficiency - and your bottom line. 

Got a question or a productivity tip to share? Reach out - we'd love to hear from you!

If you enjoyed this episode, leave us a five-star rating and a review. I'd love to know how this show inspired you to take action in your business.

You can also follow me on LinkedIn @tonyadharrison and Instagram @cignalpartners for quick tips to implement systems & structure that will propel your business forward and allow you more time freedom.

Tonya Harrison:

Hello and welcome back to another episode of the Operations Toolbox Podcast, the show that solopreneurs turn to when they are ready to go from busy and burned out to productive and profitable, leveraging foundational systems, structure and strategy. I'm your host, tanya D Harrison, and today we are having a real conversation about productivity and how productivity can help you, boost your efficiency and ultimately increase your business revenue. Productivity is extremely important for everyone, but especially solarpreneurs, because we are working so much in our business. We're not just CEOs, we are actually working within our business. So if we're not producing and we're not getting things done, this directly impacts our revenue. I want to say that one more time as a solarpreneur, if you're not being productive in your business and you're not getting things done, you are directly impacting your bottom line. There are some things that you need to do in order to generate revenue, so at minimum, you need to be doing those things. But I'm going to talk to you about three crucial concepts to help you take back control of your day and your business. So let's go ahead and jump right in the first one and if you've been following me for a minute, you have heard this, I know, time and time again, but it's something that has to be said determining the priorities by identifying your quarterly goals. So the very first thing we want to think about is that if we don't know where we're going and if we don't have a plan to get there, it's going to be really hard to get there. I can say all day that I want to make a million dollars this year, but I need to have a plan as to how I'm going to get there. I need to have a plan. So one of the main reasons we're not productive is because we don't have a plan to get to where we're trying to go. It is essential for solopreneurs to have clear direction in their business. I'm talking crystal clear. Start with your vision. What is your vision? Where is it that you see yourself in the next three to five years? And then I recommend, every year you set a goal right. So we're breaking down the vision on the path to the vision. Here's how we get there. This year you want to accomplish x, y, z, and then we're going to take and break that down in the quarterly milestones. So your quarterly goals provide focus and they enable you to prioritize tasks effectively. And we're breaking it down to the smallest level. So you're going to be able, by doing this, you're going to be able to set clear, actionable objectives for each quarter. That can help you track your progress and stay motivated. So we're looking at our vision. What is it that? Where do we see ourself in the next couple of years? And then we're saying this year I want to accomplish X, y, z. So what do you want to achieve this year? And then you're going to break that down into smaller quarterly milestones and this could be related to anything, right? So this could be related to revenue, client acquisition, how many clients I want to serve, product development, I want to put out another offering or a product, or personal growth, whatever it is. Make sure you understand what it is. And then you're going to break it down. So you really want to. Once you do this, you really want to keep those goals visible and you want to revisit them on a regular basis. So I have mine posted on my wall so I can see it on a regular basis. But then I'm going to align my daily tasks with my quarterly objectives. So, for this quarter, if my main objective is to grow my list by my email list by 25%, whatever that is I'm going to make sure my daily tasks align with that, and then you'll find that your productivity and your business revenue will improve significantly, because I am working on the things that are a priority and I am working on the things that are going to help me achieve my goal. So that is going to be my priority. That's the first concept. So the first concept is determining the priorities by identifying your quarterly goals and then breaking those down into daily tasks that you're going to work on. That's concept number one. The second concept is managing your to-do list. So we have these to-do lists and it includes all of these things, and most of the time, there is just no way as a solo prenuer a solo prenuer, even with a small team a lot of these to-do lists there's just no way we can accomplish it all. So what I want you to do is take your to-do list and we're going to go through this filter and I use what I refer to as the 4D method. It's a method that I made up, that I use, and it's four categories. You're either going to do what's on your list delegate it, delay it or delete it. Those are the four options. There's nothing else, right? So when I'm looking at if I'm going to do something or not. These are going to be the tasks that are need to be immediately done. So, and they directly relate to my quarterly goal, and it is something that I have to do. It requires my skillset, it requires my intervention to do right, because even if it's something that needs to be done and is related to my goals, it doesn't necessarily mean that I need to do it. There may be an opportunity to delegate it, which is the second D, and if there's an opportunity to delegate it, it is you're going to delegate it right. So if it requires me, if it requires, if it's required to be done right now because it's aligned with my goals and I don't have anyone to delegate it to, then of course, I need to keep it on my list to do. Okay, so when we're we're so that's number one right, do it Delegate right. So, again, this could be something that requires immediate attention, is related to the quarterly goal, but it doesn't require my skillset and I have someone to delegate it to. When we're talking about delegation, I want you to keep in mind you do not have to have a full time employee to delegate something to. This could be somebody that you hire part time. When I first started with my virtual assistant, she worked a couple of hours for me a month and there were certain tasks that she did, so you could do the same thing. So you can still delegate without having a full time employee right. So it needs to be done. It requires immediate attention, but it does not require my skill set. I'm going to delegate it. The third one is delay. So these are tasks. They contribute to the long-term growth right. So they are important, but they are not immediate. So those I'm going to schedule for a later time. So I'm going to delay them. They're not going to be done right now and then I'm going to schedule them for a later time. The fourth category is delete. These are tasks that can be deleted and don't need to be done. So a lot of times we have things on our list that really don't need to be done, or we have changed direction or whatever the case may be. If you're not comfortable with deleting them, you can put them in what I refer to as the war room. Within my project management software I have a section that's called the war room, and within that war room these are all of my ideas and things that I don't want to get rid of because I want to. I may want to go pick them up one day or what have you, but I don't want to lose track of them right now and I'm not ready to call it quits or delete them right. So if it's one of those, then you can put it in your war room. If you know that you are done with this and this isn't something that you're going to do, then you can delete that task. So again, the four categories are number one I'm going to do it. Number two I could delegate it. Number three I'm going to delay it. And number four I'm going to delete it. So, by categorizing your to-do list, you can focus on what truly matters and delegate or eliminate the rest. So this is a simple method, but it has a profound impact on your productivity. So take that to-do list and clean it up. Do not have all of that stuff hanging out there on your to-do list. Let's go ahead and put it in the category that it belongs in and move on to concept number three. So the third concept. This is where you are going to organize your day, with time blocking and tasks, right. So there's a couple of things that's going to happen. I recommend that, at the end of the day, you perform what I call a closeout process. So at the end of the day, I'm going to look at the tasks that I perform. If there's anything that I was not able to get done, I am going to start deciding what it is that I'm going to work on tomorrow. So some of those tasks may move over to the next day and then I'm going to have other tasks that I need to do. So, at the beginning of the day, I already know what it is that I need to work on. But I want you to take it one step further With time management, which is the key to productivity. We are going to go in and truly manage our time. So, in effect, the strategy that I use is time blocking. So it's a technique that involves you going in and scheduling specific blocks on your calendar, right? So when I get to my desk, I already know what I'm doing and when I'm doing it, because it's already blocked out on my calendar. If I have a task where, say, for instance, I'm going to go in and check my numbers every single Monday at 9am, that's what I do I go in and I check my numbers. It's on my calendar. It's on my calendar and I give myself an hour, even though I don't use it Right. That just gives me wiggle room. But from 9 to 10, I'm checking my numbers. That's blocked out on my calendar. So what you want to do is you want to take your high priority tasks that align with your quarterly goals and you want to put those on your calendar, first because you want to make sure those get done, and then so you'll say from 9 to 10, you're going to do XYZ. From 10 to 11, you're going to do whatever. One of the things I want to remind you is that you want to include breaks and time to recharge. So for me, I work in 90 minute sprints. That's the longest I go. So if something requires a shorter period of time, that's fine, but if it's something that is a longer project, I'll go 90 minutes. So I'll go from 10 to 1130, give myself a break and then come back to it. If that's what's on my agenda, thank you. So you literally are going to go in your calendar, and the good thing about doing this the night before is that, for those of us that have meetings, we already know that our schedule for the next day, so I already know what meetings I have, when they're going to occur, and then I can go in and I can start filling out, filling in the gaps. And then the other thing is I have days where I have no meetings, so those are days where I can just it's even easier to go in and start blocking on my calendar. So when you plan your day this way, you ensure that essential work gets done Again, leading to more productivity and increased business revenue. Additionally, I pair time blocking with task batching, so this is where I group similar tasks together. So, for instance, if I am doing content, I'll do content all at one time. So this I could do email writing, I can do social media posts, and I'll do it all at one time. This prevents context switching, right, so it helps us to work more efficiently. My brain isn't going back and forth, so I won't necessarily go from numbers to content, right, if I have a bunch of content, I'll just group it all together. I'm going to do content during this period, so that'll help you to be more efficient as well. So those are the three concepts that I wanted to share with you. So the first thing you want to do. You want to absolutely make sure you are determining the priorities by identifying your quarterly tasks and then even breaking those down further into daily tasks. And then the second one is you want to manage your to-do list and you're going to use the 4D method, which you're going to look at each task and decide am I going to do it, delegate it, delay it or delete it? The third concept is about you managing your day using time blocking and task batching methods, and that is it. So. Just remember improving your productivity. It leads directly to revenue, right? So we are the ones that are generating the revenue in our business, primarily as a solopreneur, so you definitely want to make sure you are being productive. Okay, thank you so much for turning into this episode of Operations Toolbox. I hope you found these productivity concepts valuable. If you have any questions or you want to share productivity tips, you can feel free to reach out. We are on social media Signal Partners on Instagram, tanya D Harrison on LinkedIn. So stay focused, stay productive and keep striving for success and, until next time, keep growing. Thank you so much.

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