Three Smart Ways to Plan Your Day For Higher Productivity

How many hours do you spend at work? Now, how many of those hours are spent on staying focused and productive? If you’re like most busy professionals, an honest assessment will show you spend very little time on bottom-line results.

Numerous reports and studies focus on the rule of 80/20, stemming from the work of Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto. His 80/20 rule, often called the Pareto Principle, is how evolving research has found that, in general, 20 percent of efforts lead to 80 percent of results. (Indeed, many software management reports have discovered an even more disheartening finding of 90/10.)

Imagine the extraordinary results if you can devote dramatically more than 20 percent or even 30 percent (and more!) of your time to staying focused and productive!

A major cause of lost time and productivity is what I call Overwhelm. We are overwhelmed by too many meetings and unanticipated interruptions. We also suffer Self-Imposed Overwhelm that distracts us from our goals. We spend too much time with our cell phones and email. We suffer personal stress. We don’t avoid stress traps.

Here are three keys to planning your day for higher productivity.

KEY ONE: Find Your Peak Energy Time and Use It!

What time of day do you have the most energy? For many people, it’s mornings. I find myself freshest and ready to go in the morning, so I protect my Peak Energy Time by scheduling those hours for my most important work. I block out the time between 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. each day for focused work and long-term planning.

Instead of forcing myself into a time frame when I am most resistant to creativity and action, I take control by establishing my own time frame for my most productive hours. My stress levels plummet when I’m in control of my Peak Energy Time, eliminating procrastination, helplessness and the resulting frustrations that can erode focus and productivity. Block out at least two hours during your Peak Energy Time.

o An Early Morning Person? Block out two early hour mornings.

o A Mid-Morning Person? Block out 10:15am – 12:15pm

o An Early Afternoon Person? Block out two early afternoon hours.

o A Mid-Afternoon Person? Block out 2:45pm – 4:30pm.

Regardless of the time of day you schedule as your Peak Energy Time, there are two productivity skills you must use to maximize your results.
1. Adopt the 100% Responsibility Rule. Recognize that you are responsible for your time. Take pro-active steps to stave off interruptions during this period to maintain control of your time.
2. Protect your Time Boundary. No one else will protect the boundaries of your scheduled Peak Energy Time. You must be responsible for protecting Your time boundary.

KEY TWO: Make Time for Marketing!

If you skip creating time each day for marketing yourself, your services or your products, you skip out on success. Period. No professional can afford to leave marketing by the wayside. Carve out an hour – better yet, two – during your day for marketing.
Use that time to connect or reconnect with clients, learn, research, expand your reach. You must nurture your own future or miss out on a profitable, productive career and lifestyle!

Here are a few ways to spend this crucial time of your day… for you:

o Call or email clients or prospects. Shine the spotlight on you!

o Create a marketing campaign. Research, write and revise!

o Plan a workshop, a demonstration or a training session – or find out how you can make yourself a part of another event. Maximize your reach!

o Create a news release to send out to the media and to your database. Pick up a phone and call a member of the news media. Make yourself newsworthy!

o Create an online newsletter with interesting articles. Build your audience!

o Start a blog. Blogs are the hot, hip way to maximize the power of the Internet to publicize your name and your ideas, and also to attract wide feedback so important to knowing why and how to best grow your business. Blog away!

o Learn how to use an automated marketing system. This will help you SAVE time in keeping track of and responding to your client and prospect database and buyer purchases, and become the basis for successful marketing campaigns.

o Learn how to capture email contacts. Capture emails of clients and prospective customers from your Web site, blog and e- newsletter by inviting readers to submit their name and email address in exchange for something valuable. For example, offer
FREE access to your newsletters to obtain this information.

o Make time to attend Ruth Klein’s Branding & Productivity Success Boot Camp March 4-5, 2007, in Santa Monica, California. (See Ruth Recommends below).

Learn 25 ways to capture email addresses and build your marketing database, and reap many more benefits. Maximize your marketing know-how and watch your business grow!

KEY THREE: Erase that Self-Imposed Overwhelm!

Learn how to leverage your time to avoid those self-imposed situations that overwhelm your day and distract you from your focus and productivity.

Here are a few ways to minimize distractions and maximize your results:

o Don’t answer your email when you first wake up (unless you’re an emergency worker). Wait until you first start your day with productive planning and vision time. Then answer your email. Take control at the very start of each day! Manage your email traffic. Instead of answering each email with another email, allow several to accumulate before crafting one comprehensive email response. Your answers will be much

o Take control at the very start of each day! Manage your email traffic. Instead of answering each email with another email, allow several to accumulate before crafting one comprehensive email response to your employees, colleague, clients, advertisers, etc.. Your answers will be much more astute, and best yet, it’s infectious! Let others take their cue from you on how to avoid daily email traffic jams.

o Delegate. Either delegate less important work to others or delegate your time to focus on the most important work first. Delegate at home, too!

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8 Key Ways to Make More Profit with Product Creation

So you’ve decided you want to invent or produce a new product. Product creation has become much easier thanks to the internet. Here are 8 key ways to making more profit with product creation.

Key 1: The Idea Step

Make sure it’s an idea that will work Listen to others about things that would make their lives easier, then make those things.

Key 2: Ask Questions

Product creation is more than making things–it’s making things that people want. Talk to them to see if they would use the product before you sink time and money into it.

Key 3: Research

You will need to find out first if it has been done yet. Don’t do something someone else has already done well.

Key 4: More Research

Before you manufacture it, you will need to make a prototype. This comes in several steps of creation, testing, fixing, recreation, testing, etc.

Key 5: Get People to Try It

Once you have the prototype done, get friends and relatives to try it out. If you have the money, use a focus group.

Key 6: Make Changes

If there were any objections to your product creation, make the necessary changes and make a new prototype.

Key 7: Retest

Recreate and retest until you have a perfect model for manufacturing. This will save you an enormous amount of money on failed production.

Key 8: Create It and Market

Marketing is going to be your most important key once the product creation is done and it’s being manufactured. Hire pros if you need to, but get this stage done right.

Product Launch – Basics of Launching Your Product

5 Keys to Launching Your Product Effectively

When launching your product there are five essential keys for success. Below I have listed them to assist in the success of your endeavors. Each item is integral in the master plan and needs to be addressed with the utmost care and clarity.

Key One: Your product launch must be planned. Each part or step needs to be outlined and carefully planned to allow for direction and control. An uncontrolled product launch is an invitation for disaster. A disastrous launch can be the beginning of the end for your product.

Key Two: You must have a complete and detail market plan. This needs to be finished BEFORE your product launch. An incomplete market plan leads to hasty ill conceived decisions that can be detrimental to your over all success.

Key Three: There are a variety of marketing, promotional and media tools available today, take advantage of all of them. To ignore any are is to potentially discount a valuable ally in having a successful product launch. Don’t stick with only those which you are comfortable and familiar. Step out side of the box.

Key Four: Guarantee a bountiful product launch by engaging the services of marketing professionals and other business. Remember that the initial cost of such outside assistance will be offset by the increase in profits when you have exceptional profits due to a stellar product launch. The assistance of these experts can decrease the overall stress of a product launch by lending their assistance and experience.

Five: Make sure that all facets of your product launch are completely integrated. A successful product launch is a well planned product launch. By coordinating all aspects of planning and maximizing the usage of the tools available to you, you can assure yourself of a profitable and successful product launch.