Oftentimes, “Not-to-do” lists are more effective than to-do lists for upgrading your daily efficiency.
The reasoning is quite simple: what you don’t do determines what you can do.
Even if you’re just starting out, these lists help ensure you’re not becoming a perpetual office troll when you should be a breezy business overseer. Focus on one or two at a time, just as you would with high-priority to-do items. The descriptions are worded in our standard no-fluff form and from our business area of expertise, gym management.
1. Do Less Work
Your impulse to that sentence is probable, 'no'. But your impulse is wrong.
A healthy commitment to working hard is critical to gain traction and achieve your goals. Noone will disagree there. But if you’re living at your gym these days, something needs to change. New gym, old gym, the balancing of work vs. personal time will never cease to be the most critical decision you make when creating your weekly schedule. Time inside your gym is time well spent. Time spent outside, even more so. Set a cut-off time each day to be away from your 'office' no matter where it is. The time limits put on your 'office hours' will force prioritization into the forefront for you. More decisions will get made and more action will be taken. Watch!
2. Don't Email Early in the Morning or Late At Night
The former scrambles your priorities and plans for the day, and the latter just gives you insomnia. E-mail can wait until 10 am, after you’ve completed at least one of your critical to-do items…
3. Don't Agree to Meetings/Calls With No Agenda or Time
If the desired outcome is defined clearly with a stated objective and agenda listing topics/questions to cover, no meeting or call should last more than 30 minutes. Think of how the structure of your classes or workouts. They vary slightly but have a clear order. Apply this structure elsewhere. Request meeting info in advance so you can “maximize the time together.”
4. Have Less Control
You’re one person and you can’t do it all, nor should you want to. Appoint someone to handle member management and communications. One head coach to handle programming and the schedule. It would be a good goal to get to the point where you’re at a point where you don’t have to ‘approve’ anything on the day-to-day operations side.
5. Check E-Mail Twice A Day
This point cannot be stressed enough. We recommend 10 AM and 4 PM. Email, like social media, will consume your soul and leave it on the side of the road next to the stupid meme with the dancing cat. Control the time invested here. Focus on execution of your top to-dos instead of responding to manufactured fires in your day-to-day.
6. Do NOT Over-Communicate With Low-Benefit, High-Maintenance Members
There is no sure path to success, but the surest path to failure is trying to please everyone. People often get hung up on the old adage about an unhappy customer tells 10 people or something similar. The business and social ecosystem now counteract this because ecstatic customers tell the same amount.
Do an 80/20 analysis of your customer base in two ways–which 20% are producing 80%+ of my profit, and which 20% are consuming 80%+ of my time?
Then put the loudest and least productive on autopilot by citing a change in company policies or reroute them as you best see fit. Offer to point them to another provider if they can’t conform to the new policies.
It’s trendy to be uber-productive, but it’s only possible once we remove the constant distractions and time-sucking habits we get hung up on. If you have trouble deciding what to do, just focus on not doing.
What other no-no’s would you add to the list?
© Triib Inc. 2017
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