Welcome to Part 2 of the “45 Top Entrepreneurs Share Their Tips on How to Increase Productivity at Work” series.
Modern life is filled with battles against information overload and constant connectivity. With so much effort spent filtering, absorbing, and prioritizing competing information streams, productivity often suffers.
Brief, one of the best collaboration tools, has been created to simplify and streamline the tools, processes, and time spent on planning and execution. We take productivity seriously, and we know you do too. That’s why we reached out to CEOs and business leaders to ask them one question: What is your secret to a productive workday?
Today, we’re bringing in some of the world’s most talented and ambitious entrepreneurs to share their best tips for increasing productivity so you’ll be prepared to stay at the top of your game every day.
Read on to see what they had to say:
16. Wake Up Early
Get to inbox zero before anyone else wakes up, workout as much as possible, meditate, stretch a lot throughout the day. Click To Tweet Minimize your meetings. Try to complete at least three tasks from your to-do list.
Evan Varsamis is a NYC based Entrepreneur, Founder / CEO at Gadget Flow Inc, Investor and Marketing Advisor at Qrator Ltd and contributor at Forbes, Inc, HuffPost, and American Express Essentials. Sprint Crowdfunding Fund and Crowdreach advisor and speaker. His work has been featured on Mashable, The Next Web, Entrepreneur, Fortune, Forbes, and Web Summit.
17. Capture What Is Critical
Have systems you trust for capturing information that is deemed
By systematically capturing what is critical or important in a system you trust you can have in front of you instantly – you develop what I call your 5-second-super-power.
The ability to put your finger on anything you need in 5 seconds.
Charles Byrd is a founder of Byrd Word. “The Chaos Killer” – A Silicon Valley veteran. Deep background in joint ventures, lead flow systems, and productivity.
18. Stay Within Your Work-Life Boundaries
Boundaries are more permanent and provide clear lines of demarcation for the hours I will work and the hours I will spend in my personal time and with my relationships.
I have clear boundaries around my work schedule that ensure clarity, enhance efficiency and have improved my productivity, creativity and effectiveness.
Carlos Hidalgo is a 25-year business veteran and author of The UnAmerican Dream. Over the span of the last two-plus decades, Hidalgo has held corporate roles, started his entrepreneurial ventures, and served in non-profits. In addition to his current role as CEO at VisumCx, Hidalgo also serves as a managing partner in a health care platform start-up and serves on the board on a tech start-up.
19. Play Piano
My favorite productivity tool is my piano. Click To Tweet Playing piano is fun, something I look forward to doing and playing an instrument has been scientifically proven to engage practically every area of the brain at once especially the visual, auditory, and motor cortices so it gets my mental capacity going. It’s like a mental full-body workout. It has undoubtedly help me battle procrastination and gives me a mental jumpstart.
20. Never Plan Meetings on Monday
I always make sure to never plan meetings on Monday unless it’s important and I can’t get out of. Mondays are meant for easing into the week and planning out my to-do’s.
Vi Nguyen is the CEO and cofounder of Homads.com. Homads is a site that uses machine learning to help you find neighborhoods that feel more like you. They’re the social search for real estate.
21. Tough Things First
The most productive thing anyone can do is to do the tough things first. From tackling a pesky budget issue to slogging through the finer points of product development challenge, doing the tough things first is akin to moving the biggest boulders before you do anything else. This not only builds discipline but establishes a sense of accomplishment like none other. Doing the tough things first enabled me to run Micrel Semiconductor for 37 years, a record in fickle Silicon Valley.
Raymond D. “Ray” Zinn is an inventor, entrepreneur, investor, angel, bestselling author and the longest-serving CEO of a publicly-traded company in Silicon Valley. He is also the founder of a nationally launched ZinnStarter program at colleges around the country, providing the financial and mentoring support for students to launch new products and companies. In 2015, Ray published his first book, Tough Things First, with McGraw Hill.
22. Go For A Run
I wake up, put my shoes on half-sleeping, and go for a run/hike/swim/flight (paragliding).
Adrien Colombié is the founder of Flying Saucer, a fully remote digital agency dedicated to helping small marketing teams create better growth by supporting them with strategy, design, and content creation.
23. Get Off Social Media
One of my favorite productivity hacks comes with the help of an app called StayFocusd. When working from home, Facebook and Twitter can be a significant distraction. StayFocusd helps avoid these distractions by restricting the amount of time you can spend on them. The Google Chrome extension lets you set specific time restrictions on certain websites with a 10-minute default option. Once your time has been used up, the sites you have selected to block can’t be accessed for the remainder of the day.
24. Write Out Your To-Do List By Hand
Each day I write out my to-do list by hand, tracking every task that I need to accomplish and each project I am working on. I re-write the list every morning based on what was accomplished and what has not been completed. The more I write it down, the more drive I have to accomplish it. This is a visual way to stay accountable while keeping priorities in order.
Bryn Butolph is the founder and CEO of Eat Clean Meal Prep, the largest locally owned food delivery organization serving San Diego County. Bryn has made such an impact with these nutritious and flavorful dishes, the San Diego Mayor dubbed October 23rd “Eat Clean Meal Prep Day”.
25. Turn All Distractions Off
Organize and execute all the tasks nobody else can do first, and then, do the rest. Click To Tweet Turn all distractions off (phone, email alerts, sms) and focus on one thing at a time. It works.
Alvaro Psevoznik is a Digital marketing strategist with more than 25 years of experience helping companies of all sizes on their digital transformation.
26. Make Lists
My productivity tip may seem a bit old-fashioned – I make lists. Each morning I make a list of my priorities for the day. The most urgent items are listed at the top. The list helps me focus, which is not always easy to do given everything that goes on during the day. Anything that is not completed during the day is automatically moved to the top of the list for the following day, unless something more urgent comes up. I encourage my team to do the same so that we always have a visual representation of what our priorities are across the company.
Sagi Solomon is CEO and Founder of Vetter Software. Vetter Software’s cloud practice management solution is trusted by 1,200 veterinary practices to improve efficiency, eliminate missed charges, and reduce costs. Vetter Software was founded in 2011, and it’s based in Redwood City, California.
27. It’s about allotting time
I am fiercely protective of my calendar and make it an active habit of managing how I spend my time. By allotting time on my calendar for family, travel, and email, I know that I have a finite amount of time each week for meetings.
Nicole Latimer, CEO of StayWell, a leading healthcare innovation company. As chief executive officer, Nicole embodies the company’s mission to be the premier provider of lifestyle risk management programs for the entire healthcare ecosystem, leveraging behavioral science as the foundation for improving health outcomes.
28. Follow a 1-3-5 Rule
As a co-founder for a startup, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the things that you have to do—especially since we’re basically in charge of everything for our business. To avoid this, I follow a 1-3-5 rule—1 major task, 3 medium sized tasks, and 5 small tasks—so I can tackle my tasks without overestimating what I can actually finish in a day.
Julie Weldon is the CEO at O.M.E. Gear. O.M.E. stands for Oceans + Mountains = Earth—the brand behind a pioneering and innovative outdoor adventure and lifestyle product called The Wanderr.
29. Use Calendly
I’m using Calendly to help schedule meetings and interviews. Calendly integrates with my work calendar and makes it easier to schedule everything, including client calls, new business calls, and interviews.
Giulia Umile is the Chief Operating Officer at Slice Communications. Slice Communications, a leading communications agency in Philadelphia, was just named one of Philadelphia’s Top Places to Work in 2019
30. Use the Hemingway app
I am doing an incredible amount of writing which I enjoy. However, I found that I am not a fast copy-editor. My first draft comes together quickly, but I take a ton of time to polish and refine. So I use the Hemingway app and Grammarly to proof for content, readability, and grammar. It gets me from the ‘draft’ phase to ‘published’ in about 10% of the time.
Juli Lassow is the founder and principal of JHL Solutions, a business solutions and management firm with expertise in retail.
What recommendations do you have for others who want to increase their productivity? Please comment with your thoughts and recommendations.