4 ways to get stuff done


Are you full of great ideas and wish that you could somehow magic each of them into existence, but somehow the time passes and they never seem to get done?  Well you are not alone.  Many of my clients fall into that category; you see it is so much easier to think up stuff than to actually do it.  

Just today I was working with a client on a new value proposition.  We had worked through a strategy to move his product from commodity into a customer experience so that he could sell even to people who were not looking for his product.  We had worked up 2 new offers and a new route to market that we agreed could be implemented with no more than a few days work.  I was packing up ready to go and asked if there was anything else I could do for them, when I was asked by his business partner if I knew anybody that could help them plan.  She knew he was not great at getting things done – the day job kept getting in the way.  I came up with 4 techniques.

1.    Set aside a period in each day for implementing good ideas

Turn off the phone, log out of email and ban social media.  Takes a bit of discipline, but it actually works.  Excluding distractions helps concentration and turns time into quality time.

2.    Write it down - simply

Followers of Neuro Linguistic Programming will recognize that one of the key reasons for procrastination is not quite knowing where to start.  Write a really short and simple action plan covering each of the things that need to be done to turn the idea into reality and work through each item, not starting the next until the previous is complete.  Keep it simple as complexity is a HUGE distraction.

3.    Set a challenging deadline

Tell people that you are going to launch something or sign up for a time limited opportunity.  When you simply cannot put things off any longer, it really focuses the mind.  It is amazing how fast you can work when you have very little time.

4.    Nag or shame

Motivation by carrot is great, but often a gentle stick is more effective.  I always give my coaching clients some homework and they know that the first part of each session is to ask how they got on with it.  No need for shouting – gentle disappointment is far more effective for the few that do not do it under their own volition.

With this particular client, we agreed to use all 4.  I will be calling him on Monday afternoon to see how he got on!

Banner image © Mark Neild 2013  Dolphin in Bay of islands New Zealand taken shortly before we went swimming with them.