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9 Habits that Accelerate the Efficiency of Successful Entrepreneurs

9 Habits that Accelerate the Efficiency of Successful Entrepreneurs

Innovative ideas are born every minute. With such intense competition, entrepreneurs who want their business to succeed must develop highly efficient habits and skills that also allow for personal growth.

Successful entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, and Sir Richard Branson all have one thing in common: they were known to have developed certain habits and unique approaches that made their businesses remarkably successful. By taking a closer look at each of the following habits, you can learn from the best and see how the habits of other successful entrepreneurs might apply to the type of entrepreneur you want to be.

1. Automating and delegating low-impact tasks

Spotting repetitive tasks in order to automate and delegate them allows successful entrepreneurs to focus on the high-level and impactful activities that no one else can do instead. For example, tech entrepreneurs Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs are notorious for wearing the same clothes to work every day in order to eliminate time spent deciding what to wear. Instead, they could free up that time to focus on high value tasks.

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2. Not taking ‘no’ for an answer

Assertiveness plays a central role when it comes to developing ideas and creating a vision for your company. Usually, it’s only those who do not give up easily who end up closing the deal. They are the ones who look at every possible option and create opportunities where there haven’t been any before. Elon Musk, known for PayPal and Tesla Motors, is known for such grit by trying one venture after another.

3. Rugged tenacity

Known to have perfectionist tendencies, highly successful entrepreneurs aren’t afraid to make drastic adjustments to keep the business going. Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer set up a nursery in her office to shorten her maternity leave and get back to important tasks at hand. This is not to say her child was not important but that her time management was essential.

4. Constantly looking to solve customer problems

Consumers develop trust in companies that understand their pains. A successful business constantly innovates in order to offer new solutions that go along with the needs of their target market. One of Twitter’s founders, Evan Williams, strongly exhibits this customer-centric approach, which is reflected in the rapid growth of his other company, writing platform, Medium.

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5. Willingness to fail

Entrepreneurs who are willing to learn from their defeat are also likely to succeed in their next ventures. Payal Kadakia, founder of Classpass, imbibes such a mentality. Upon recognizing that her previous business ideas were not going anywhere, she decided to make a shift, create better business strategies, and start a new venture. A great way to think of this is to ask yourself, “Would I invest in my business in its current state?” If your answer is “no”, it’s time to address failure as an option.

6. Strong knowledge of the business

Most entrepreneurs who don’t have industry-specific skills and experience usually struggle when faced with challenging situations they are not accustomed to. However, those who have dedicated their lives to building their business know the ins=and-outs of its operations. Having valuable first-hand experience is crucial to the company’s success.

7. Transparency

Both employees and consumers trust entrepreneurs who have an open-door policy. Sir Richard Branson of Virgin Group exemplifies this habit by regularly blogging and sharing highlights about the company on the corporate blog. As an added bonus, his writing also improves the company’s visibility in the process.

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8. Cultivating a positive working environment

With a globally distributed team, Taso Du Val, CEO of Toptal, practices the habit of empowering his employees to make excellent decisions that spur company growth. Allow employees to take ownership in the business by actively communicating your company’s goals with the entire organization. This helps them feel a sense of ownership toward the organization.

9. Staying true to the company culture

Successful entrepreneurs use their differences as an advantage. They do not follow what others are already doing. Instead, they set their own standards and develop unique strategies that speak to the kind of company they have.

While anyone could come up with innovative ideas anytime, only those with the right attitude and highly efficient habits end up succeeding. If you want to accelerate the success of your business, you better start developing habits that will lead to the most impact.

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Featured photo credit: Jarle Naustvik via flic.kr

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

The same old motivational secrets don’t really motivate you after you’ve read them for the tenth time, do they?

How about a unique spin on things?

These 16 productivity secrets of successful people will make you reevaluate your approach to your home, work, and creative lives. Learn from these highly successful people, turn these little things they do into your daily habits and you’ll get closer to success.

1. Empty your mind.

It sounds counterproductive, doesn’t it?

Emptying your mind when you have so much to remember seems like you’re just begging to forget something. Instead, this gives you a clean slate so you’re not still thinking about last week’s tasks.

Clear your mind and then start thinking only about what you need to do immediately, and then today. Tasks that need to be accomplished later in the week can wait.

Here’s a guide to help you empty your mind and think sharper:

How to Declutter Your Mind to Sharpen Your Brain and Fall Asleep Faster

2. Keep certain days clear.

Some companies are scheduling “No Meeting Wednesdays,” which means, funnily enough, that no one can hold a meeting on a Wednesday. This gives workers a full day to work on their own tasks, without getting sidetracked by other duties or pointless meetings.

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This can work in your personal life too, for example if you need to restrict Facebook access or limit phone calls.

3. Prioritize your work.

Don’t think every task is created equal! Some tasks aren’t as important as others, or might take less time.

Try to sort your tasks every day and see what can be done quickly and efficiently. Get these out of the way so you have more free time and brain power to focus on what is more important.

Lifehack’s CEO has a unique way to prioritize works, take a look at it here:

How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

4. Chop up your time.

Many successful business leaders chop their time up into fifteen-minute intervals. This means they work on tasks for a quarter of an hour at a time, or schedule meetings for only fifteen minutes. It makes each hour seem four times as long, which leads to more productivity!

5. Have a thinking position.

Truman Capote claimed he couldn’t think unless he was laying down. Proust did this as well, while Stravinsky would stand on his head!

What works for others may not work for you. Try to find a spot and position that is perfect for you to brainstorm or come up with ideas.

6. Pick three to five things you must do that day.

To Do lists can get overwhelming very quickly. Instead of making a never-ending list of everything you can think of that needs to be done, make daily lists that include just three to five things.

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Make sure they’re things that need to be done that day, so you don’t keep putting them off.

7. Don’t try to do too much.

OK, so I just told you to work every day, and now I’m telling you to not do too much? It might sound like conflicting advice, but not doing too much means not biting off more than you can chew. Don’t say yes to every work project or social engagement and find yourself in way over your head.

8. Have a daily action plan.

Don’t limit yourself to a to-do list! Take ten minutes every morning to map out a daily action plan. It’s a place to not only write what needs to be done that day, but also to prioritize what will bring the biggest reward, what will take the longest, and what goals will be accomplished.

Leave room for a “brain dump,” where you can scribble down anything else that’s on your mind.

9. Do your most dreaded project first.

Getting your most dreaded task over with first means you’ll have the rest of the day free for anything and everything else. This also means that you won’t be constantly putting off the worst of your projects, making it even harder to start on it later.

10. Follow the “Two-Minute Rule.”

The “Two-Minute Rule” was made famous by David Allen. It’s simple – if a new task comes in and it can be done in two minutes or less, do it right then. Putting it off just adds to your to-do list and will make the task seem more monumental later.

11. Have a place devoted to work.

If you work in an office, it’s no problem to say that your cubicle desk is where you work every day.

But if you work from home, make sure you have a certain area specifically for work. You don’t want files spread out all over the dinner table, and you don’t want to feel like you’re not working just because you’re relaxing on the couch.

Agatha Christie never wrote at her desk, she wrote wherever she could sit down. Ernest Hemingway wrote standing up. Thomas Wolfe, at 6’6″ tall, used the top of his refrigerator as a desk. Richard Wright wrote on a park bench, rain or shine.

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Have a space where, when you go there, you know you’re going to work. Maybe it’s a cafe downstairs, the library, or a meeting room. Whenever and wherever works for you, do your works there.

12. Find your golden hour.

You don’t have to stick to a “typical” 9–5 schedule!

Novelist Anne Rice slept during the day and wrote at night to avoid distractions. Writer Jerzy Kosinski slept eight hours a day, but never all at once. He’d wake in the morning, work, sleep four hours in the afternoon, then work more that evening.

Your golden hour is the time when you’re at your peak. You’re alert, ready to be productive, and intent on crossing things off your to-do list.

Once you find your best time, protect it with all your might. Make sure you’re always free to do your best uninterrupted work at this time.

13. Pretend you’re on an airplane.

It might not be possible to lock everyone out of your office to get some peace and quiet, but you can eliminate some distractions.

By pretending you’re on an airplane, you can act like your internet access is limited, you’re not able to get something from your bookcase, and you can’t make countless phone calls.

Eliminating these distractions will help you focus on your most important tasks and get them done without interruption.

14. Never stop.

Writers Anthony Trollope and Henry James started writing their next books as soon as they finished their current work in progress.

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Stephen King writes every day of the year, and holds himself accountable for 2,000 words a day! Mark Twain wrote every day, and then read his day’s work aloud to his family to get their feedback.

There’s something to be said about working nonstop, and putting out continuous work instead of taking a break. It’s just a momentum that will push you go further./

15. Be in tune with your body.

Your mind and body will get tired of a task after ninety minutes to two hours focused on it. Keep this in mind as you assign projects to yourself throughout the day, and take breaks to ensure that you won’t get burned out.

16. Try different methods.

Vladimir Nabokov wrote the first drafts of his novels on index cards. This made it easy to rearrange sentences, paragraphs, and chapters by shuffling the cards around.

It does sound easier, and more fun, than copying and pasting in Word! Once Nabokov liked the arrangement, his wife typed them into a single manuscript.

Same for you, don’t give up and think that it’s impossible for you to be productive when one method fails. Try different methods until you find what works perfectly for you.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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