1. Delegate everything you possibly can. As a business founder your time is
scarce. If you have an employee that you pay at a rate less than half of
what you value your time, and they can do the job 50% as fast as you, you
should probably let them do it instead of doing it yourself.
2. Automate everything you can that gets done often. It’s easy to waste
tons of time doing daily, low level tasks. Tools exist to automate much of
this work, so buy them and use them.
3. Figure out your peak productivity hours, and make sure you’re doing the
hardest work during them. Some people think more efficiently in the
morning, others get a productivity boost at 10pm. Know yourself and use
your times of greatest productivity to buckle down on the most energy
4. Work with timers, and no distractions. Give yourself timed worked blocks
(for example, one hour) where no email or other distractions are allowed.
As soon as the timer goes off, you’ve earned yourself a short break. Many
people find that this yields an immediate productivity benefit.
5. Take just the first step on those things you’ve been putting off. When
work feels too odious we can put it off for days or weeks. Give yourself
permission to just do the first 5 minutes of that work, and stop after the
first step. That makes getting going much more bearable, and more often
than not you’ll find that after 5 minutes you’re in the zone and are fine
with doing more.
6. Get everything out of your head and into a list. There are far too many
things to remember, so get them out onto a list instead, and have a regular
time each day or each week to review those lists. Otherwise you’re bound to
forget important details, which will hurt your effectiveness.
Contributed by the co-founder of Rebellion Research, an Artificial Intelligence based quant fund