I admire an author named Ryan Holiday. He posted a list on Twitter of how to be more productive. I introduce this as a checklist to consider if you are trying to figure out how to “juice” things up as you move toward a new year.
1. Read, Read, Read
Chances are you’re not a reader. Statistics show that many of us put down reading as soon as we leave formal education. That being said, I know my greatest source of creativity comes from the reading I do.
I read books. I scan Twitter for content recommendations. There are some industry publications I follow that give good information. Warren Buffett, one of the world’s great businessmen, says he reads 500 pages a day. Reading 500 pages a day is a luxury most of us can’t afford, but each of us can find some time to read a bit more. Look at your schedule. Can you get up earlier and read? Can you put aside television for 30 minutes and read? Reading is a discipline. Reading often and well is like training for a race. You have to change what you are doing and go for it. Read more.
2. Make Commitments
We are the sum of our commitments. Commitments are more than beliefs. They are more than good ideas. Commitments are backed up by action. Commitments are maintained at the expense of something else. When you make a commitment to be somewhere on time, to do a job, to learn a skill, and you honor that commitment, people trust you. You get more to do and to contribute. You grow.
3. Work with Great People
I hope you find us to be a good company. Our goal is to have bosses that care. To cultivate teams that are dedicated to quality work. To provide an environment where everyone can grow and develop new skills. If we fall short on that, call us on it. If we honor it, help us get even better people by recruiting good people, training colleagues, and holding them accountable to our standards.
4. Focus on Effort, Not Results
We strive to do things the right way. Safely. High Quality. Efficiently. Productively. If we make an effort to do things the right way, we will prosper. If we get results without doing it the right way, we will eventually pay.
5. Get a Little Better Each Day
You either get better, or you get worse. If you aren’t trying to get better, chances are you will slip. We don’t drift into excellence. We make progress. Daily.