Advertising
Advertising

Everyone Should Learn The Mindset Of Productive People

Everyone Should Learn The Mindset Of Productive People

We all know people who just seem to get things done; but have you ever noticed that productive people tend to be happier and more well-rounded too?

The skills that achievers use to help them complete tasks, hit deadlines, and finish projects are the same skills that can help you become a happier, more balanced individual in every part of your life.

Advertising

Everyone should aspire to build a productive mindset. Here are eight tips to improve both your productivity and your life:

Be Solution-focused

If you focus too long on a problem, it can really start to bog you down. You can end up going around in circles, feeling more and more frustrated and worried about the pickle you’re in, rather than doing anything to fix what’s wrong. Productive individuals take one good look at the problem and then immediately move on to search for solutions. Focusing on finding answers helps you feel more in control and gets you out of the problem more quickly. Finding solutions helps you accomplish things, and the sense of pride you get from that can make you feel happier too.

Advertising

Put Down Boundaries

If you’re always saying ‘yes’ to people or going out of your way to accommodate others while neglecting your own needs and goals, you’re unlikely to meet your own targets, and you’re likely to end up feeling resentful and bitter. Learning to say ‘no’ to things that don’t serve you frees up your own time and promotes a feeling of self-respect. There’s nothing wrong with helping others or giving your time and attention to them, but you must only do so when it doesn’t cross your own boundaries or eat into what you need to do. Choose what and who you say ‘yes’ to carefully at home and at work.

Have a Healthy Routine

Some of the most productive people in the world swear by similar morning routines. Rising early to have an exercise session, a protein-rich breakfast, and a spot of meditation feature in many particularly productive people’s mornings from big business owners to presidents. Having a good start to the day gives you all sorts of benefits, including a clearer head, a healthier body, a better mood, and more focus.

Advertising

Streamline your Life

You might marvel at how much productive people seem to get done in a day, but what you’ll usually find is that they’ve set things up in a way that makes it easier for them to succeed. Whether it’s putting automated systems in place, delegating, or just having all the necessary tools ready to hand, productive people have a head-start because they’ve simplified and streamlined their processes. If you invest a little time in decluttering, preparing, and organising, you’ll not only save yourself time in the long-run, but you’ll save yourself stress and headaches. And you’ll have much more time to do the things you really value later on.

Look at the Bigger Picture

Productive people don’t get distracted because they’ve always got the bigger picture in mind. They don’t think about a report as a piece of administration or see a spreadsheet as a list of numbers ‒- instead they view these things as necessary steps to achieve their goals. And beyond that, they’ll know why this particular goal is of value to them and how it will enhance their life overall. Whether it’s to make money, to gain security, or to revolutionise the world, productive people see tasks as vital cogs in the greater machinery of their project and their life. Whenever you need to do anything important, bear in mind how good it will make you feel to do it or how it will enhance your well-being. Focusing on these positive things allows you to stay motivated and happy at home and at work.

Advertising

Be Positive About Yourself

People who don’t get things done are often waylaid by their own lack of self-belief. If you don’t think you’re capable of achieving anything, why even try? Productive people put their best foot forward and don’t allow negative self-talk to steer them away from their goals. Not only does a healthy sense of self-efficacy help you focus and achieve more, but respecting your unique skills, qualities and strengths will make you feel happier too. It’s really a self-fulfilling prophecy — if you pep talk yourself, you’ll probably find that you’ve got much more to cheer about because you’re more likely to perform better when you have a positive focus.

Know Nothing Has to Be Perfect

If you tried to be perfect in everything you did, you’d never ever get anything done. Perfection is an impossible marker, and trying to live up to it just leaves you feeling frustrated and depressed. Productive people focus on doing their very best, but don’t allow a few flaws to delay their dreams or stop their progress. Not only does letting go of perfectionism allow you to get more done, it also takes the pressure off you, letting you enjoy what you are doing and have more fun with it.

Respect Time

If you really thought about what’s precious in life, you’d realise that time is one of the most valuable commodities — it’s one that we only get a certain amount of, and once it’s gone, we can’t get it back. Productive people know the value of time and have a healthy respect for it, which is partly why they are able to stay so focused. You’d find it far less tempting to play Candy Crush if you knew it was your last day on Earth. Respect the time that you have in the world and it’ll be easier to live your life to the fullest, cherishing and enjoying every moment.

More by this author

When Someone You Love Is Having a Tough Time, Remind Them of These 20 Things 4 Things Meditation Does To Your Mind And Body 10 Signs You Are Under Too Much Pressure at Work Everyone Should Learn The Mindset Of Productive People 15 Smart Things Every 20 Something Should Do To Get The Most Out Of Life

Trending in Productivity

1 How to Motivate Employees and Boost Team Productivity 2 How SMART Goal Setting Makes Lasting Changes in Your Life 3 7 Clever Goal Tracker Apps to Make the Most of Your Business in 2019 4 The Surefire Method to Set Long Term Goals and Reach Success 5 17 Smart Tips on Setting Goals to Accomplish More in Life

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on February 18, 2019

How to Motivate Employees and Boost Team Productivity

How to Motivate Employees and Boost Team Productivity

These days, in a world with cognitive, AI, and extraordinary advances, we have failed at the most basic stimulus: motivation. Why do I say so? Just take a look at these statistics:

58 percent of managers said they didn’t receive any management training as per a CareerBuilder.com survey. Only 12% of employees leave their jobs because of more money. Research indicates that around 80% of employees leave their jobs due to “lack of appreciation”. Due to fear of failing, more than half of American workers don’t take their paid vacations. 53% of Americans are unhappy at work (not engaged). And 1 in 3 are working in a field they don’t like.[1]

Archaic people management and HR structures are the root cause.

“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

So how to motivate employees and boost team productivity?

Here are 3 key things that you can do to motivate your employees and boost team productivity:

1. Run Your Team/Group/Company like a Lean Startup

The Lean Startup phenomena by Eric Ries has been socialized across millions all over the globe. In a nutshell, it is a methodology for developing businesses and products, which aims to shorten product development cycles and rapidly discover if a proposed business model is viable; this is achieved by adopting a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning.[2]

Advertising

Encourage Your Employees

When you empower your employees (or family members) to do what they deem to be best for a particular roadblock, idea, or improvement, you create magic. You create genuine trust. You enable innovation. The result is happy, inspired employees who feel they have a say in the grand cosmic stage at work.

Note that increasing the competency level of employees and coaching and mentoring them along the way is key. You yourself, need to do the same. Nourish your brain – and get a mentor that will keep you at the edge of your game.

Offer Rewards

Motivation is also intrinsic. The startups I have worked at offered instant rewards — not just fat checks or equity increments, but Oscar-style nominations.

The non-monetary rewards were actually more coveted, and grandiose: lunch with the CEO, tickets to an Obama fund-raiser, horse-back riding with a world-class equestrian.

Compare this to a dodgy, corporate, white-cubicle dinosaur that had a “yearly performance review” where both parties dread the conversation. In a world of instant WhatsApp messages, having a conversation about performance, likes and dislikes cannot just happen annually in 60 minutes. Employees need to be rooted in the belief that their manager genuinely cares about them.

Give Autonomy

Another key attribute is autonomy. Most employees start brushing their resumes and cruising LinkedIn when their hands are tied in their current positions: approval forms, long meetings, escalations, and more meetings. In the world of agile and scrum masters, deliberating for the sake of deliberating is poison. You will choke the very employees that giddily accepted the job initially to “change the world”.

Within a reasonable realm of assessment and deep-dives, trust your employees to do the heavy lifting. Give them access to the knowledge, people and resources that help them directly make the choices that will shape the future of your team, and your company.

Advertising

Eliminate yourself as the bottleneck – and interject yourself as a benevolent, servant leader that is the symbol of high-performing organizations.

2. Apply the 90/90/1 Rule

I recently saw a video by Deepak Sharma (a leadership adviser) about productivity and this principle stuck with me. Here’s what it’s about:

Devote the First 90 Minutes of Your Day to Important Project

For the next 90 days, devote the first 90 minutes of your day to your most important project—nothing else. Do this for yourself and your employees.

We usually get sucked into the most wasteful, operational activities in the morning which robs our focus, and steers us into an unwanted rabbit hole. So mute your notifications, avoid the temptation to check your exploding inbox, and scroll your Instagram feed later. Instead, focus on that ONE thing that will provide real value to you, your team, or your business/company/home.

Apply this rule to yourself – and your team. Your team will thank you. Note: If you’re feeling really stretched for time, you can always hack the rule by testing out a “45/45/1” version.

A To Do Scheduling System

Another version of this is to use the Kanban concept, developed by Taiichi Ohno, an industrial engineer at Toyota. Kanban is a scheduling system employing boards and cards.

The most basic version is a canvas with “To-do”, “Doing”, and “Done” boards (or columns). Each activity or task is a “card” that moves from one column to the other. I use Trello (a Kanban-inspired app) that is a key system for my personal and professional life. It allows me to understand my workload, their priority, and due dates.

Advertising

I use importance and effort metrics (scores) for each task to understand what is truly necessary in my life to work on. It negates the FIFO (first-in, first out) paradox that has plagued millions of people. Instead, it allows me to take stock of what is on my plate, and then bite on what truly will move the needle for me, my team, my life, and my company.

With a limited appetite (at least for some), would you eat the veggies, fries, mashed potatoes and leave the sizzling steak? No, you wouldn’t (unless you are a vegan and ended up in the wrong restaurant).

Approach your work with a weighted vengeance – and encourage your team to do the same.

3. Align Passion and Skills to Purpose

The heart of human excellence often begins to beat when you discover a pursuit that absorbs you, frees you, challenges you, and gives you a sense of meaning, joy and passion.

“The most fortunate people on earth are those who have found a calling that’s bigger than they are—that moves them and fills their lives with constant passion, aliveness, and growth.” — Richard Leider

An ace team-member once told me that while she enjoys working for the company we both used to work at, she really hated anything to do with technology. She was more of a “people” person, and did not want to sit behind a desk sifting through lines of code.

What struck me was that she was in that role for more than a decade and had just spoken up. The good thing is she spoke up. She expressed her desire and interests. And it allowed her to get into a role of her liking within 30 days.

Advertising

Ask If They like What They’re Doing

If you, or a team member is frustrated, demotivated, or not performing at their best – one of the questions you should ask is whether they like what they are doing. Then genuinely try to help them get to the role they should be in (whether in the same team/company or not).

There’s a reason why 53% of Americans (and perhaps more or same across the globe) are unhappy at work. A butcher cannot be an ace salad maker. Pursue your passion – and help pave the way for your team. Unlock your potential and theirs. You will command and lead a supercharged team.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

The Bottom Line

Sometimes, passion has to be ignited. It is dormant, clouded by busy-ness, buried by wrong career choices, and plagued by non-supportive eco-systems. Some will climb out of it, but we as society — and in the case of business teams — incumbent upon the manager/CEO/leader to foster, grow, and nurture the employee.

Teach her the ropes. Show her the path. Advise him as you would yourself. Let them lead, and make mistakes. Do not fear them, rather make them the leader you would want to become.

For your not-so-great team members, understand that it is not personal, it is just not a good fit. Help them move on to the pastures they would be fit to graze on. Hence, hire slow (and fire fast).

Your team is a reflection of you. Boosting their confidence and helping them achieve the impossible is motivation. Focus on that, and you will have a productive team that you and your company will be proud of.

More Resources About Team Management

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next