Did you ever see the 1996 movie Multiplicity with Michael Keaton? Click here to watch video. I was in graduate school then, wishing I could clone myself the same way his character did. There would be one version of me to do the vocational work, one to have fun and be rebellious, and one to handle the household and family. Of course, the idea of cloning is to have an exact replica of oneself to be more productive.
Well, twenty years later, I still have the same wish, more or less! During that time, though, I have learned some additional skills and managed to achieve balance, albeit temporary and fleeting. I have mastered how to juggle multiple priorities and maintain focus using three simple techniques: Delegation, Outsourcing, and Technology.
Delegation – Simply telling somebody what you want done does not mean you are delegating effectively. Effective delegation includes two key components: giving clear instructions on the front end of an assignment and providing feedback and support throughout the project. If you give detailed instructions on what you want, people may be clear about what to do, but if you never follow up with guidance and course corrections, they will stop caring as much because they perceive it as not important to you. If you don’t give clear instructions, but instead give constant feedback, you will be seen as a micromanager. The key is a balanced approach with instructions and follow-up.
Outsourcing – Hire specialists for important activities. Critical tasks involving any activity in which you are not an expert – filing taxes, negotiating contracts, managing your marketing –should be outsourced to a professional. There are key professionals and experts in many fields to consider, including CPAs, attorneys, web designers, marketers, etc.
Technology – I find that managing technology, even with an occasional “blip,” is much easier to manage than people! I love to implement new strategies with cool applications, software programs, and gadgets that maximize my time and productivity. I am able to be 100% remote, work from anywhere, and never miss a beat – that’s productivity. For a list of my top 10 technology tools, go to: https://surpassyourgoal.leadpages.net/top-10-technology-tools .
The most important thing to determine when using these strategies – whether delegation, outsourcing, or technology – is what you can get rid of and to whom you can give it. Start by making a cloning list. For one week, keep track of all the activities that come up that you don’t need to do and then determine who is best suited to do what. In addition, make sure you reference your to-do list for those items that you never seem to get to. Those are great starting points!
For help with prioritizing activities, hiring the right people, and leveraging technology, you also might want to consider working with a business coach!