Personal Leverage: How to Truly 10x Your Productivity - Nat Eliason - Deepstash

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Personal Leverage: How to Truly 10x Your Productivity - Nat Eliason

https://www.nateliason.com/blog/personal-leverage

nateliason.com

Personal Leverage: How to Truly 10x Your Productivity - Nat Eliason
Keep going until you're left with the few core things you need to, and want to, be doing.

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We all have the same amount of time

We all have the same amount of time

Some use their time to accomplish an impossible amount of work, while others waste their time repeating the same few tasks, perhaps gaining 10% improvements each year.

Even if you believe you're in the first camp of making heroic progress, if you're focused on finding the right productivity app, you're in the second.

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Define exactly what goes into your daily process

It's easy to fall into the habit of doing something repeatedly without clarifying what the steps are. Explaining how to do things ensures tasks are done properly, and that no one has to spend time constantly re-teaching how to do something. Once the system is defined, it's possible to start automating and delegating it.

Before you consider automating or delegating a system you've defined, go through each step and see if it can be removed, combined with another step, or if you can create some new step that removes a handful of others.

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Increasing your productivity through personal leverage

Financial leverage involves using other people's money to improve everyone's returns. The very rich had the confidence to take on some leverage to increase their upside if they succeeded.

We all have access to another form of leverage which can be the difference between increasing your salary by 10% per year and doubling it every year. It's called Personal Leverage and is a measure of your ability to extend your productivity beyond yourself.

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Two ways to increase your personal leverage

  1. Decrease the amount of time something takes you. You can get 10% more productive.
  2. Pay a machine or person for their time. You can get 10x more productive.


The best way to extend our work beyond ourselves and take advantage of personal leverage is to go through the Personal Leverage Loop: define, refine, automate, and delegate.

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Automation and delegation

  • Look at each individual step of your refined process and ask if a machine could do this. But be careful not to skip straight to the automation step without defining and refining the system first. Skipping to automation might create unnecessary complexity.
  • Once you have defined, refined, and automated the system to the greatest extent, you can delegate it. Invest in someone who can take the system you started, implement it as you designed it, then continue to improve and refine it. If someone was doing this work instead of you so you could focus on other things, would you eventually be able to afford them? Taking a step back financially often gives you the ability to take two steps forward. If someone else could do the work at least 80% as well as you, delegate it.

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Single Task

Switching between tasks can have damaging costs to our work and productivity.

Develop the habit of single-tasking by forcing your brain to concentrate on one task and one task only. Put your phone away, close all the browser windows and apps that you don’t need. Immerse yourself in this task. Only move to the next one when you’re done.

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Time management is not a peripheral activity or skill. It is the core skill upon which everything else in life depends.” 

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Delegation method and staff experience

  • For new and inexperienced in the job staff -  use a directive delegation style (Tell exactly what you want them to do).
  • For staff that has experience ...

Question to consider when before delegating

  • Who can do this job instead of you?
  • Who can do this job better than me?
  • Who can do this job at a lower cost than me?
  • Can this activity be eliminated altogether?

For an effective delegation...

  1. Match the Person to the Job: never delegate an important task to a person who has not performed that task satisfactorily in the past.
  2. Agree on what is to be Done.
  3. Explain How the Job Should Be Done: Explain your preferred approach or method of working.
  4. Have Him Feed It Back: the only way that you can be sure that the other person actually understands the job or assignment
  5. Set a Deadline.
  6. Manage By Exception.

Measure Output, Not Input

Systems are the best way to progress since they reward effort and we control all the variables. However, we need to have a sense of direction in those efforts, to know what we are trying to...

Use the 80/20 Rule

... to constantly question yourself if your focus, time or money is on the things that generate the majority of the results.

The 80/20 rule, also known as the Pareto Principle states: 80% of the output or results will come from 20% of the input or action. The little things are the ones that account for the majority of the results.

Reserve Mornings for Deep Work

Our working memory, alertness, and concentration gradually improve a couple of hours after waking up, peaking at about mid-morning - our brain’s natural peak productivity period.

Take advantage of this state, by scheduling your most important work for this period. Focus on performing Deep Work, meaning you get to work free of distraction for a long period of time.