What is inefficient?
- Saying “yes” to too many things
- Poor time management
Multi-Tasking has been proven multiple time to not be an effective way to get tasks accomplished. Sure, you can pat your belly and rub your head or vice versa but will you do either task as well if you did them individually? I can watch TV and write this blog post but it will take me twice as long. Research around multi-tasking has shown that when you divide your attention between two different tasks that it is the equivalent of dropping 15 IQ points. I don’t know about you but I need all the brain power I can get. Multi-tasking is a hard habit to break. The more focus you can bring on a task the more efficient and effective you will be while accomplishing that task.
Rigidity in how you function or in business processes that you employee can be a blocker to efficiency. You need to allow yourself enough time and slack to account for unforeseen events and circumstances. If you don’t allow yourself to ever deviate from your plan even when things change you will end up being ineffective and inefficient. If you need to go from point A to point B and it turns out point A is at the bottom of a hill and point B is at the top of the hill the if you don’t allow yourself to deviate from a straight path you might spend more time and energy than if you had taken the path with switchbacks. In business if you are not able to change your plan when circumstance dictate the need you might find yourself out of business. It might mean tweaking a product or finding a different vertical to sell into.
Saying “yes” to too many things means you either don’t have a handle on your task capacity or have yet to learn how to nicely say “no”. If you have too much on your plate you will be under stress and possibly rushing tasks not giving your most effective work. If you are under above normal stress you will not be performing at your top level. If you are not able to devote the actual time required to perform a task fully or effectively then you are doing yourself and whomever you are doing the task for a disservice.
Poor time management is a phrase I have heard and experienced the consequences of
many times. From brilliant people, I have heard many times that they are horrible at estimating the time tasks will take them. I have seen clients and loved ones upset because a person was not able to accurately assess how long a task would take them. I agree that estimation can be hard however I do not think that it is a skill that is emphasized. If you are able to accurately estimate and manage the time that tasks take you will be more effective and efficient in the execution of those tasks.
Comment below and tell me what else is inefficient.