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Too Many Ideas in your Mind? Let Your Hyper Creative Mind To Achieve Success

Too Many Ideas in your Mind? Let Your Hyper Creative Mind To Achieve Success

There’s no doubt about it – your hyper creative mind operates on a different level. You listen to people around you who long to rejuvenate their creativity.

But you? You can’t seem to shut your creativity up.

At all hours of the day and night random great ideas pop willy-nilly into your mind. And from the outside this would seem to be a great thing.

But it’s not. Your hyper creative mind is running you ragged. You’re chasing all your ideas and not completing what you set out to do. Frankly, you’re not really getting anywhere.

How can that be?

How can you be so creatively brilliant but never seem to achieve the level of success you know you could?

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Because you might be suffering from a hyper creative mind.

Understanding the Hyper Creative Mind

Hyper creative people have traits that are similar to ADHD:

The traits of inattention, impulsiveness, restlessness, daydreaming, lack of social skills, enthusiasm, hyperactivity, and difficulty in finishing projects are descriptive of successful and creative people as well as “ADDers.” (http://borntoexplore.org/evolve.htm)

Which means if you are hyper creative your inability to remain excited about a project once you get part way into it, is not simply because you are lazy, have no stick-to-it-ness, or just don’t care. Part of your brain is hardwired to want to spend all it’s time just creating those new brilliant ideas that get you so stoked up.

Now that we know it’s not all your fault that you’re this way, the question is, what can you do about it?

What can you do to turn that hyper-creative fire into hyper-success?

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3 Steps to Keep Your Hyper Creative Mind on Task

1. Be Aware of Your Brain’s Battle

Be mindful of what’s going on in your brain.On a simplistic level your brain has two systems that fight for control:

a)  The instinctual system that keeps you alive (if it’s cold get warm, if you’re hungry, eat). Your instinctual system lives in the moment and often knows what’s best for you (finish the project, get the paycheck).

b) And you have your intelligence system. This system can think and reason and decide what you might or might not want to do. This system allows you to override what might be best (you know it would be healthier if you went out and got that exercise but well, you’d rather watch TV).

As the two control systems battle it out the result is that you don’t always do the “right” thing. Every human has this internal battle, but for the hyper-creative person the bombardment of ideas creates fertile ground for more frequent and exhausting fighting. As in, you know you need to finish that project but the impulse to pursue your new idea feels too strong to ignore.

2. Explore Your Personal Hyper Creative Pattern

Ask yourself these questions:

  • On any given project, when do you begin to lose focus or interest?
  • Is it not too long after you begin a project?
  • When you start on the final stretch before the end of a project?
  • Do certain types of projects always lead to loss of interest?
  • Do you do better when you work in a group or alone?
  • When you have short or long deadlines?
  • Do you hate paperwork or love to see reams of organized folders?

Once you get when you begin to lose focus and what types of projects lead to lackluster interest, think about what the signals might be that precede your usual crash and dropping off a project. Do you start finding excuses to do other things? Do you stop keeping to a schedule or start calling friends? Do you start poking holes in your project and decide it’s just too flawed? Or do you simply start to cut corners and do less than your best?

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Take some time responding to the above questions because understanding your personal hyper-creative pattern will help you develop the best emergency plan in step 3.

3. Prepare an Emergency Stay-on-Task Plan

Generally speaking, hyper-creative people have strong highs and lows. You probably know this about yourself – you get that new idea and pow! you are higher than a kite and feel it’s this idea that will not only make the world a better place, but will skyrocket you to fame and riches. The best time to put your emergency plan into action is when you are on a high and you’ve just hit one of your signals (step 2) that the crash and loss of interest is coming.

The following ideas are suggestions to get you started on your own stay on task plan. But use what you know about yourself, and your responses in step 2, to develop a plan that is specific to your pattern and your needs.

Idea 1. Create a no way out for yourself

If you are the type of person who hates to disappoint people you can use this. Tell your boss you will have the project complete by Thursday and even if you have to stay up all Wednesday night you’ll probably get it done because you want to avoid having to go into their office and saying, “I’m sorry, I didn’t get it done after all.” For humans, avoiding discomfort is a strong tool so figure out something you want to avoid and then build that into your emergency plan.

Idea 2. Chunk the remaining project tasks

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Most steps of any project have multiple smaller steps. Even when you start to lose interest there are most likely aspects of the steps left that you innately enjoy. Breaking down what’s left into small bites will help you see that there are portions you’d still like to do.

Idea 3. Make your environment more fun

As you face your usual crash and loss of interest, make what you have left to do more fun. Is a fancy coffee drink a rare treat? Go to your favorite coffee house and get one while you sit there and crank through the dreaded paperwork. Or, if you always crash and burn at your desk, take your laptop outside. The point is to shake it up because that just might be enough so you can coast to safe project completion.

Don’t be hard on yourself. Keep in mind that even two steps forward and one step back is still moving forward. Ideas are great and what the world needs to continue to progress. Once you get a handle on your own hyper creative pattern you will begin to feel more like you are controlling it, rather than like it is controlling you. Then you can get back to being excited about all those great cool ideas with the confidence that now those very ideas that used to hinder your success can contribute to it.

Resource: The Hyper-Creative Personality by Blaire Palmer

Featured photo credit: Beautiful woman holding a paintbrush with colours coming out from it via Shutterstock

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Last Updated on January 6, 2021

14 Ideas on How to Measure Productivity to Make Progress

14 Ideas on How to Measure Productivity to Make Progress

Everyone has heard the term productivity, and people talk about it in terms of how high it is and how to improve it. But fewer know how to measure productivity, or even what exactly we are talking about when using the term “productivity.”

In its simplest form, the productivity formula looks like this: Output ÷ Input = Productivity.

For example, you have two salespeople each making 10 calls to customers per week. The first one averages 2 sales per week and the second one averages 3 sales per week. By plugging in the numbers we get the following productivity levels for each sales person.

For salesperson one, the output is 2 sales and the input is 10 sales: 2 ÷ 10 = .2 or 20% productivity. For salesperson two, the output is 3 sales and the input is 10 sales: 3 ÷ 10 = .3 or 30% productivity.

Knowing how to measure and interpret productivity is an invaluable asset for any manager or business owner in today’s world. As an example, in the above scenario, salesperson #1 is clearly not doing as well as salesperson #2.

Knowing this information we can now better determine what course of action to take with salesperson #1.

Some possible outcomes might be to require more in-house training for that salesperson, or to have them accompany the more productive salesperson to learn a better technique. It might be that salesperson #1 just isn’t suited for sales and would do a better job in a different position.

How to Measure Productivity With Management Techniques

Knowing how to measure productivity allows you to fine tune your business by minimizing costs and maximizing profits:

1. Identify Long and Short-Term Goals

Having a good understanding of what you (or your company’s) goals are is key to measuring productivity.

For example, if your company’s goal is to maximize market share, you’ll want to measure your team’s productivity by their ability to acquire new customers, not necessarily on actual sales made.

2. Break Down Goals Into Smaller Weekly Objectives

Your long-term goal might be to get 1,000 new customers in a year. That’s going to be 20 new customers per week. If you have 5 people on your team, then each one needs to bring in 4 new customers per week.

Now that you’ve broken it down, you can track each person’s productivity week-by-week just by plugging in the numbers:

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Productivity = number of new customers ÷ number of sales calls made

3. Create a System

Have you ever noticed that whenever you walk into a McDonald’s, the French fry machine is always to your left? 

This is because McDonald’s created a system. They have determined that the most efficient way to set up a kitchen is to always have the French fry machine on the left when you walk in.

You can do the same thing and just adapt it to your business.

Let’s say that you know that your most productive salespeople are making the most sales between the hours of 3 and 7 pm. If the other salespeople are working from 9 am to 4 pm, you can potentially increase productivity through something as simple as adjusting the workday.

Knowing how to measure productivity allows you to set up, monitor, and fine tune systems to maximize output.

4. Evaluate, Evaluate, Evaluate!

We’ve already touched on using these productivity numbers to evaluate and monitor your employees, but don’t forget to evaluate yourself using these same measurements.

If you have set up a system to track and measure employees’ performance, but you’re still not meeting goals, it may be time to look at your management style. After all, your management is a big part of the input side of our equation.

Are you more of a carrot or a stick type of manager? Maybe you can try being more of the opposite type to see if that changes productivity. Are you managing your employees as a group? Perhaps taking a more one-on-one approach would be a better way to utilize each individual’s strengths and weaknesses.

Just remember that you and your management style contribute directly to your employees’ productivity.

5. Use a Ratings Scale

Having clear and concise objectives for individual employees is a crucial part of any attempt to increase workplace productivity. Once you have set the goals or objectives, it’s important that your employees are given regular feedback regarding their progress.

Using a ratings scale is a good way to provide a standardized visual representation of progress. Using a scale of 1-5 or 1-10 is a good way to give clear and concise feedback on an individual basis.

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It’s also a good way to track long-term progress and growth in areas that need improvement.

6. Hire “Mystery Shoppers”

This is especially helpful in retail operations where customer service is critical. A mystery shopper can give feedback based on what a typical customer is likely to experience.

You can hire your own shopper, or there are firms that will provide them for you. No matter which route you choose, it’s important that the mystery shoppers have a standardized checklist for their evaluation.

You can request evaluations for your employees friendliness, how long it took to greet the shopper, employees’ knowledge of the products or services, and just about anything else that’s important to a retail operation.

7. Offer Feedback Forms

Using a feedback form is a great way to get direct input from existing customers. There are just a couple of things to keep in mind when using feedback forms.

First, keep the form short, 2-3 questions max with a space for any additional comments. Asking people to fill out a long form with lots of questions will significantly reduce the amount of information you receive.

Secondly, be aware that customers are much more likely to submit feedback forms when they are unhappy or have a complaint than when they are satisfied.

You can offset this tendency by asking everyone to take the survey at the end of their interaction. This will increase compliance and give you a broader range of customer experiences, which will help as you’re learning how to measure productivity.

8. Track Cost Effectiveness

This is a great metric to have, especially if your employees have some discretion over their budgets. You can track how much each person spends and how they spend it against their productivity.

Again, this one is easy to plug into the equation: Productivity = amount of money brought in ÷ amount of money spent.

Having this information is very useful in forecasting expenses and estimating budgets.

9. Use Self-Evaluations

Asking your staff to do self evaluations can be a win-win for everyone. Studies have shown that when employees feel that they are involved and their input is taken seriously, morale improves. And as we all know, high employee morale translates into higher productivity.

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Using self-evaluations is also a good way to make sure that the employees and employers goals are in alignment.

10. Monitor Time Management

This is the number one killer of productivity in the workplace. Time spent browsing the internet, playing games, checking email, and making personal calls all contribute to lower productivity[1].

Time Management Tips to Improve Productivity

    The trick is to limit these activities without becoming overbearing and affecting morale. Studies have shown that most people will adhere to rules that they feel are fair and applied to everyone equally.

    While ideally, we may think that none of these activities should be done on company time, employees will almost certainly have a different opinion. From a productivity standpoint, it is best to have policies and rules that are seen as fair to both sides as you’re learning how to measure productivity.

    11. Analyze New Customer Acquisition

    We’ve all heard the phrase that “It’s more expensive to get a new customer than it is to keep an existing one.” And while that is very true, in order for your business to keep growing, you will need to continually add new customers.

    Knowing how to measure productivity via new customer acquisition will make sure that your marketing dollars are being spent in the most efficient way possible. This is another metric that’s easy to plug into the formula: Productivity = number of new customers ÷ amount of money spent to acquire those customers.

    For example, if you run any kind of advertising campaign, you can compare results and base your future spending accordingly.

    Let’s say that your total advertising budget is $3,000. You put $2,000 into television ads, $700 into radio ads, and $300 into print ads. When you track the results, you find that your television ad produced 50 new customers, your radio ad produced 15 new customers, and your print ad produced 9 new customers.

    Let’s plug those numbers into our equation. Television produced 50 new customers at a cost of $2,000 (50 ÷ 2000 = .025, or a productivity rate of 2.5%). The radio ads produced 15 new customers and cost $700 (15 ÷ 700 = .022, or a 2.2% productivity rate). Print ads brought in 9 new customers and cost $300 (9 ÷ 300 = .03, or a 3% return on productivity).

    From this analysis, it is clear that you would be getting the biggest bang for your advertising dollar using print ads.

    12. Utilize Peer Feedback

    This is especially useful when people who work in teams or groups. While self-assessments can be very useful, the average person is notoriously bad at assessing their own abilities.

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    Just ask a room full of people how many consider themselves to be an above average driver and you’ll see 70% of the hands go up[2]! Now we clearly know that in reality about 25% of drivers are below average, 25% are above average, and 50% are average.

    Are all these people lying? No, they just don’t have an accurate assessment of their own abilities.

    It’s the same in the workplace. Using peer feedback will often provide a more accurate assessment of a person’s ability than a self-assessment would.

    13. Encourage Innovation and Don’t Penalize Failure

    When it comes to productivity, encouraging employee input and adopting their ideas can be a great way to boost productivity. Just make sure that any changes you adopt translate into higher productivity.

    Let’s say that someone comes to you requesting an entertainment budget so that they can take potential customers golfing or out to dinner. By utilizing simple productivity metrics, you can easily produce a cost benefit analysis and either expand the program to the rest of the sales team, or terminate it completely.

    Either way, you have gained valuable knowledge and boosted morale by including employees in the decision-making process.

    14. Use an External Evaluator

    Using an external evaluator is the pinnacle of objective evaluations. Firms that provide professional evaluations use highly trained personnel that even specialize in specific industries.

    They will design a complete analysis of your business’ productivity level. In their final report, they will offer suggestions and recommendations on how to improve productivity.

    While the benefits of a professional evaluation are many, their costs make them prohibitive for most businesses.

    Final Thoughts

    These are just a few of the things you can do when learning how to measure productivity. Some may work for your particular situation, and some may not.

    The most important thing to remember when deciding how to track productivity is to choose a method consistent with your goals. Once you’ve decided on that, it’s just a matter of continuously monitoring your progress, making minor adjustments, and analyzing the results of those adjustments.

    The business world is changing fast, and having the right tools to track and monitor your productivity can give you the edge over your competition.

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    Featured photo credit: William Iven via unsplash.com

    Reference

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