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#1 - BECOME MORE PRODUCTIVE. HOW?
Make a list of every task you have to complete during the day, then cross-compare all of them amongst each other to find out what comes first, what comes second and so on.

#2 - TECHNOLOGY IS YOUR FRIEND! Your time is yours and yours only, make yourself available for clients at the schedule that fits you best. Use technology to help you receive messages that you can reply to later, when it's most convenient to you.

#3 - OUTSOURCE TO MAXIMIZE YOUR TIME.  There are minor tasks an assistant or a remote service can take care of SO don't waste your valuable time on those! The investment is definitely worth it.

 

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"The only way you can get ahead and make yourself more productive is you've got to replace the low value tasks that you're doing today with somebody who's you can pay less.

And then be disciplined with that time that you've now freed up to work on your prioritized list and make sure that you're actually working and earning either the amount of money you want, whether it's fifty dollars an hour or three hundred dollars an hour.

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Coaching highlights from our weekly Street Smarts MBA Live call...

Hugh

Plan and set up an appointment with yourself, OK? 

You are the number one most important client you have, so you've got to block off your calendar.

You got to use your calendar and block off a set of time when you're going to do these tasks that you're working on, your stuff on your business. 

It's not an appointment with anybody else that's critical. 

If you don't do that, your time gets away on you.

And your calendar is going reminding you that you've got to do this and you've got to block it in advance.

That makes sense. That's one of the next aspects really important to do this. 

Next concept, you got to know your hourly rate, what do I mean by that? Well.

 The simplest method is if you want to earn, let's say it's one hundred thousand bucks, I'm going to use easy numbers.

One hundred thousand dollars and you working 12 hours a week, I mean, two thousand hours over a year. 

How do I get to two thousand hours? Well, that's 50 weeks times 40 hours a week. 

So you have 50 weeks, why am I taking 50 weeks when the math is easier? But also because you're going to I'm going to assume you take at least two weeks vacation. 

I know many of you work more than 40 hours a week, but we're going to keep it at 40 hours. You really should have some time off. So this equals thousand.

So your time, at a minimum is worth one hundred dollars an hour if your goal is to work or you're getting near it, if it's half that hundred , then your hourly rate is forty point fifty dollars an hour. 

Except that's not quite true. Because you're not going to be productive every single hour of your day.

So in reality, especially if you're trying to charge money, I would say that you're only really one third of the time productive. 

And that's being generous, right, Sonia? 

Sonia

That's right. 

The other third is going to the refrigerator to load up on snacks, so one third is productive! 

Hugh

So really it’s a hundred dollars an hour, not 300.

This is why so many of us charge not enough, and here's the concept. 

Regardless of whether it's 50 dollars an hour or three hundred dollars an hour, I want you to ask yourself when you're doing a task, could I hire somebody less than my hourly rate to do it right now? 

And I'm willing to bet the answer is yes, more than half the time. Oh, man, yeah, I thought I could find somebody like  ten dollars an hour.

Fifteen dollars an hour. I mean, now this is assuming that if you hire somebody to take that task off your plate, your plate, whether you outsource it or whatever. And Sonia and I, we do a lot of outsourcing. I myself have got three people at the moment.

We outsource a lot of tasks because we're trying to duplicate our time and we understand the concept of our hourly rate.

And that's the only way you can get ahead and make yourself more productive is you got to replace the low value tasks that you're doing today with somebody who's you can pay less.

And then be disciplined with that time that you've now freed up to work on your prioritized list and make sure that you're actually working and earning either the amount of money you want, whether it's fifty dollars an hour or three hundred dollars an hour, I don't care the concept the same.

Sonia - On responding to messages when you’re in the creative zone

And so you're fearful that if you don't answer the email right away, that if you don't take the phone call away that you're going to miss out on something a client wants. Someone is going to be upset with you.

Get real about why is it that you feel the need to always be on your email, always taking every phone call?

They are not going to go anywhere unless someone deletes it.

The voicemail will be there. One of the things I found with people calling, if it's truly important, they'll leave a message. 

If it's not important, they won't leave a message. 

So allow your technology, your tools, your devices to actually work for you to be a filter. 

If you don't have a call service that can filter or a coordinator or a secretary that can filter for you, let your technology be your filter.

And but then you can also teach people that you do respond. And if you only respond certain times during the day.

I personally don't really care to look at email first thing.

I usually look at what am I going to get done first thing? 

Because the minute you see that email, especially if you're dealing with a client or prospect or a partner that you already have some emotional misgivings about. You see their name in your email and your stomach starts to churn.

That's going to mess up your whole concentration, especially if you're focused and your most creative time is in the morning. 

I call it Uncle Murphy showing up. Murphy's Law say, whatever can go wrong will go wrong. 

And I find that when you need to be your most creative, when you need to focus on your business, that's when everything will come up that says this is more of a priority. 

And so I usually hit the foundational things first, which are also the things that are most time consuming. 

They're the most thought intensive. 

They're not fun and sexy. Rarely are they fun and sexy. 

But at the end of the day, I know that's the foundation that I'm going to build upon. That'll get me to the stuff that 's a little bit more fun and sexy and enjoyable.

But if the foundation is not built, you're always going to be going back to square one. 

And how long is it OK for you to keep going back to square one? 

When you have enough of that, you'll quickly become very dogmatic and take over your schedule, very ruthlessly. 

And at the end of the day, nobody really notices or really cares. They just want to know that, hey, you're going to respond in a reasonable amount of time.


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