The Power Of A Daily 1 Percent Improvement

TRANSCRIPT But, imagine the power if every single person woke up every day and said "what could I do to be one percent better today?" You would roughly double your ability every 70 days. Think about that. Think about the power of how that would compound. It can be something little. It can be saying you know what? Today, I’m going to pick up the phone instead of send an email. Today, that typical one hour meeting, we are going to reduce that to forty five minutes. Today, I’m going to learn a new function in my software that I don’t already know. Today, I’m going to sit down and talk to a coworker about a process that is making me crazy. Today, I’m going to think if I were the queen of the word and king of the world if I could make up some rules about how we can use email around here more … [Read more...]

Filling Big Shoes: Living Up To and Surpassing Your Predecessor’s Reputation

Filling Big Shoes: Living Up To and Surpassing Your Predecessor's Reputation by Laura Stack

"I've got big shoes to fill. This is my chance to do something. I have to seize the moment."— Andrew Jackson, seventh President of the United States.   In just about every field of endeavor, you start out at or near the bottom (depending on the extent and quality of your education), and have to work your way up from there. According to the Peter Principal, you also rise to your highest level of incompetence; this takes quite a while for the best of us. When you're promoted into a new position, you'll most likely fill the gap left by someone who's either lost their job due to incompetence, or who was competent enough to win a rung slightly higher up. It doesn't really matter which; you still want to wow your superiors with your sheer ability and high performance levels. But on … [Read more...]

Four Training Tips: Maintaining Your Team’s Competitive Edge

Four Training Tips: Maintaining Your Team's Competitive Edge by Laura Stack #productivity

Regular training for your employees is integral to productivity and profitability, meaning it's something you should never take for granted. Among other things, training: 1. Improves Confidence and, Therefore, Performance. When people know they've been equipped to do their jobs properly, it boosts their spirits and reassures them they can achieve levels of competency and productivity they haven't realized in the past. Further, when employees understand why their work matters and how to do it, they're more likely to hit the mark or go above and beyond. 2. Saves the Company Money. Well-trained employees make fewer errors and require less direct supervision. Furthermore, they spend less time thinking about problem solving, because they already know what to do. Consistent training also … [Read more...]

Tune up Your Efficiency Engine: The Big Five Health Factors for Leaders

The Big Five Health Factors

Good health doesn't automatically produce productivity for leaders, but it prepares you for it. You can't do your best work when you feel bad. You've noticed how sluggishly your brain works after a poor night's sleep or a missed meal, how distracting a growly stomach can be, and how low self-esteem can create nagging anxiety. Now compare all that to workdays when you felt in tip-top condition, bursting with energy and good health. I'll bet you performed extremely well on those days. You can't control all the factors contributing to good health, but you can control most of them. I find these five most im¬portant to me: 1. Sleep. The typical adult requires seven to nine hours of restful sleep per night. Among other things, sleep helps you fend off infection and illness, because your … [Read more...]

Five Productive Ideas I Learned From Jason Womack

Five Productive Ideas I Learned From Jason Womack by Laura Stack #prductivity

I had the pleasure of attending a seminar today from a fellow faculty member of the Institute for Management Studies (my husband John Stack is the Chair of the Denver chapter), JASON WOMACK. Here are five awesome ideas I gained on how to boost your productivity: 1. If a meeting suddenly gets canceled, what’s the first thing you usually think? “Ooooh I can catch up”! Instead, Jason suggests you can never get caught up. Even if you “do email” all day on a Sunday, you’ll never get caught up. Instead, you should get ahead with any unexpected “found” blocks of time. Work on a long-term project and make progress—not just maintain. 2. Technology is massively key to personal productivity! Here are some great resources Jason offered: and Speedkeys. Also use … [Read more...]

The Ultimate Competitive Advantage: Translating Learning into Action

The Ultimate Competitive Advantage: Translating Learning into Action by Laura Stack #productivity

"What I hear, I forget. What I see, I remember. What I do, I understand." -- Confucius, ancient Chinese philosopher "Training is everything. The peach was once a bitter almond; cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education." -- Mark Twain, American humorist. Every business leader worth their salt recognizes the value of training team members to fit their jobs better. Who among us hasn't attended conferences, seminars, classes, and workshops designed to improve our productivity? And you send your team members to the same. Most companies have no problem with training; they know it's necessary, and actively pursue it for their employees. That said, the new learning we absorb from our training sometimes fails to make the jump from theory to practice, for reasons varying … [Read more...]

Get Away From It All to Improve Your Productivity

  Want to know a sure way to improve your productivity? Take a vacation! Working non-stop without breaks is counterproductive, as is focusing on work to the exclusion of family, friends, and fun. Some people claim to be so swamped they don't have time for a break— not for vacation, not for a social life, not for anything. I am severely unimpressed by people who brag about the long hours they put in each week. All this tells me is they're not managing their time well. You have to figure out how to get the results your job requires, leave the office on time, and get home to your life. If you're working too many hours, perhaps you're not delegating properly…or you haven't hired enough people…or you don't trust your assistant…or you haven't learned to use your email program … [Read more...]

The Productivity Minute #3 by Laura Stack – Graciously Refusing Requests from Coworkers Part I

The Productivity Minute, Episode 3.  How do you say NO without saying NO?  Laura Stack explains how to tactfully decline requests by coworkers in this episode. (C) 2009 Laura Stack.  All rights reserved. … [Read more...]

Go on a Low-Information Diet and Improve Your Efficiency!

Pretty much anybody you ask will tell you they’re pressed for time. There just aren’t enough hours to get it all done, yadda yadda yadda.  So we prioritize, streamline, and simplify.  You can improve your efficiency until you’re blue in the face, not to mention very tightly wound, but you still aren’t addressing one of the biggest time and energy wasters in your day: incoming information.  As my 13-year-old daughter, Meagan, would text on her phone: “TMI” (translation: Too Much Information). If the 21st century has brought us anything, it is WAY too much information. You can watch several channels full of cable news 24 hours a day. You can surf the internet on any topic until you can’t see straight. Most people could heat their home with the amount of junk mail they receive on a continuous … [Read more...]

NEW Productivity Pro audio podcast! The Importance of Productivity During Down Times

Like it or not, social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are here to stay – and it isn’t just kid stuff anymore.  In fact, businesses and individuals worldwide keep finding interesting ways to use social networks and other interactive online media to do some pretty amazing things – from building their brands to getting to know their customers. How do you keep it from sabotaging your productivity? Powered by … [Read more...]