This week’s Monday Morning Message from Wm. H. Danforth, founder of Ralston Purina:
What is the Monday Morning Message?
A farmer stood fascinated before a merry-go-round. He changed a dollar into twenty nickels. He took a ride and then paid another nickel for another ride, until he had spent all twenty nickels.
“Aunty, wasn’t that great fun?” he asked a spinster lady who was waiting for him.
“Maybe so,” was her reply. “You’ve spent your money going round and round, but where’ve you been?”
Draw your own lesson.
Do you confuse movement with progress? It’s easy to do. We spend our days running from place to place and feeling busy, but we may not be accomplishing anything of value.
Try this exercise this week:
As you go through each day, note what you are doing. At the end of the day, look over your list. Were you doing “busy work” or accomplishing tasks that will move your business forward?
Although it may be almost impossible to get rid of all busy work, look for ways to minimize the amount of time you spend on it.
When you identify busy work first ask, “Is this something that really needs to be done?” It may be that you can stop doing it without any negative results.
If the task needs to be done ask, “Is this something that I should be doing, or could someone else do it?” Delegate or outsource anything that is not the best use of your time.
Taking action on those two questions may free up several hours a week. So how will you use those hours?
Determine what activities are the most productive and profitable for you, and focus your efforts there.
One reason we fill our days with activities that do not lead us closer to our goals is that we may not have a clear vision of those goals. When you know where you are going, you are less likely to spend your time going around in circles.