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4 Steps to Start 2016 STRONG – MOVE FAST – Finish STRONGER

Happy New Year!

Hope you had a terrific celebration.

Now it’s time to start work.

Over the years, we have found that starting the year right, starting the year STRONG, can make all the difference between a so-so year and a Great year.

Step 1 – Set Clear Goals

If you haven’t already a plan in place for 2016, it’s not too late to start. As you warm up into the new year (only 2 working days have passed), take some time to chart the course for your business in 2016.

Many of you would have made some New Year resolutions I’m sure. Be sure you’ve written them down. This is the first step to success. If you haven’t already, write down your Top 3 -5 goals. Make sure they are concrete, specific and measurable. Why? Because if you can’t measure your goals, you won’t be able to monitor progress and you might as well say goodbye to that “goal”.

And, be sure to have at least one of your goals a numeric goal. Yes, one of your goals has to be a numerical goal – e.g. increase sales by 20% or reduce Days Outstanding from 60 to 55 days, or increase gross margin by 2%.

Step 2 – Prepare a detailed Plan

Once you’ve got your top goals down pat, the next step is to prepare your Action Plan. What do you need to do to achieve those goals? What strategies will drive your business? When do those activities need to get started? What resources do you need? Who will help you with implementation? What other preparation do you need to achieve your goals?

Step 3 – Implementation

Once you’ve got your plan done, run it through with your team. Make sure everyone is clear on what needs to be done and who’s responsible for what.

Implementation is the key to success.

The plan is like a roadmap, but you still need to make the trip –  the actual journey. If you’re climbing Mount Kinabalu, you need to book the flights, arrange for a mountain guide, decide who’s bringing what and actually make the climb! The more you prepare for the climb, the smoother the climb will be.

Same with business. The better your plan, the smoother the implementation.

Step 4 – Progress Monitoring

As you go along, check your progress. Celebrate when you reach your milestones. Make course corrections when necessary.

So, there you go, Four simple steps to START STRONG – Move Fast – and Finish Stronger.

All the best for 2016!

Peter Master No Comments

The 4 D’s of Great Time Management

In today’s fast-paced digital world, we’re constantly struggling to get everything done. We’re always trying to get more done, wishing there were more hours in the day. Nope. There aren’t 36 hours in the day. And the Time Travel machine has still not been invented.

But the good news is, there are a few practical hacks you can use to get more done in your day and increase your and your team’s productivity.

1. Do it, Defer it, Delegate it or Dump it

( There’s 4 D’s there already!)

This age old principle is time – tested. Whenever you open an email or WhatsApp message or pick up a physical document or letter, make a decision. Decide whether to handle it straight away (Do it ). Or handle it at a later time – but schedule when (Defer it) ,or delegate it to one of your team (Delegate it) or decide no action is required (Dump it).

This one technique, also known as “single-handling” will save you at least 15-30 minutes a day.


2. Dare to Decide

To practice the above “Do it, Defer it, Delegate it or Dump it” principle, you have to make a quick decisions. It takes a bit of practice but after a while it’ll become second-nature. Just get started on adopting this principle – just make a decision. If you don’t feel comfortable with your decision to Do it or Defer it for example, you can always change your mind or learn from it afterwards… “next time, on matters like this, I’ll defer it.” Or vice – versa.

By exercising a decision, your “decision-making muscle” becomes stronger and you become more confident.

Motivate yourself to build this habit by focusing on the reward of saving 15-30 minutes or more each day.

3. Diarize Daily

This is another great habit to develop. Plan your daily diary or schedule the evening before. You should have already planned your entire week in advance, but now as you approach a new day, it’s good to review that original plan scheduled perhaps a week ago, and put in more detail.

But planning the next day the evening before, you get off to a great start every day. You’re clear what exactly your day will look like, what the priorities are for the day and how you will start your day. There’s little room for ambiguity or pondering and wondering what to do next in the next hour.

The other benefit of scheduling or planning your day the evening before is you also get to review your current day. What went well, what results did you achieve and what can you do better the next day?

4. Discipline

Yes, at the end of the day, time management is about self-management. It’s really about self discipline. Scheduling your day with tasks and activities is one thing. But keeping to your schedule and working on the pre-scheduled priorities takes discipline. It’s often easy to lose focus, get distracted or wonder off-course doing something else, something that’s perhaps easier or more fun ……. like checking WhatsApp messages or having a coffee with someone who just popped by !

It’s easy to keep appointments with others, but it often requires a lot of discipline to keep appointments with ourselves – to do the necessary and important things that we must do, whether we like it or not.  Like planning, strategizing and reviewing.

And, sometimes, we need an external party to help us stay on track. That could be your PA, your wife or perhaps a business coach. In any case, if you practice this 4 D’s of great time management your performance will soar.

We have a special coaching programme to help you and your team get a hold of your time, productivity and performance. Call us for a no-obligation free consult or email for more information about how to stop Procrastination – the Thief of Time!