Becoming more productive is on everyone’s to-do list. It’s a difficult task to accomplish, though, because of the hundreds of distractions coming at us throughout the day. In a post on Quora, CEOs and entrepreneurs shared their favorite hacks on what they do to get things done. Each response was excellent, so we filtered through some of the most notable ones and put together this list in hopes they will help inspire you.
Dustin Moskovitz, co-founder of Facebook and co-founder of Asana:
“One of my favorite hacks is No Meeting Wednesdays… With very few exceptions, everyone’s calendar is completely clear at least one day of the week. Whether you are a Maker or a Manager, this is an invaluable tool for ensuring you have some contiguous space to do project work.”
Auren Hoffman, CEO of LiveRamp:
“Focus. Do not multitask. Do fewer things.”
Matt DeCelles, co-founder of William Painter:
“First off, it’s a 2-step process – prioritization stage and execution stage. Prioritize the most important tasks… Delegate like a boss. Use a whiteboard to list all of the tasks that are yours to accomplish. Use a post-it note to record the 3 most important things. Now comes the fun part, the execution stage. Set iPhone in Do Not Disturb Mode. Set Mac in Do Not Disturb Mode. Remove temptations with self-control. Track your time. Take a break when you are not being productive anymore. Listen to music.”
Brian Halligan, CEO and co-founder of HubSpot:
“Try taking one work-from-home day a week. One of my favorite hacks is that every Wednesday is my work-from-home day. So if I’m not traveling in a given week, or even if I am traveling, I keep Wednesday open and that’s the day that I can just think and get stuff done.”
Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos:
“Turn yesterday’s emails into today’s to-do list.
- Your “to-do” list each day is simply yesterday’s inbox.
- If it can wait 48 hours without causing harm, then you are not allowed to respond… even if it’s a simple one-word reply.
- When processing yesterday’s inbox, you must process 10 of yesterday’s emails before you’re allowed to look at any emails that are coming in today.”
Phil Libin, CEO of Evernote:
“Stop relying on email so much. One of the things I’ve tried to do is uproot any sort of email culture at Evernote. We strongly discourage lengthy email threads with everyone weighing in. It’s just not good for that. Plus, it’s dangerous, because it’s way too easy to misread the tone of something. If you want to talk to somebody and you’re a couple floors apart, I kind of want you to get up and go talk to them.”
David Allen, productivity consultant and creator of the time management method, “Getting Things Done”:
“Use the Two-Minute Rule. When a task arises that you know you can complete in two minutes or less, do it immediately.”
Remco Van Mook, co-founder of Virtu:
“Show up to the office earlier than anyone else. You’ll hate it, but you’ll get done more in that hour and a half than the rest of the day—you’ll be running from distraction to distraction afterwards.
Alok Bhardwaj, founder of Hidden Reflex:
“Start your day by doing the least desirable task first. Do not read any news, anything similar while working. Workspace is for work only. Create a daily to-do list of 3-5 things you MUST get done. Don’t try to do too much, don’t try to optimize too much, delegate, stay focused on the picture. Exercise, meditate every day.”
These tips are no doubt motivating, but thinking about becoming more productive and actually setting things in motion are two very different things.
Becoming more efficient and productive starts with deliberate intention and organization. Join GetAssist today and start purposeful connections and conversations, organize your days and meetings using the shared calendar feature, eliminate email strings by having team discussions on your company’s private community bulletin board, and keep online distractions and unnecessary noise to a minimum.