How did that guy who doesn’t work weekends become so successful? How does that woman who never checks email after a certain time make it to the head of her unit?
Do they have a supporting cast of child minders and house keepers and errand runners at home? Do they have a secret staff at their disposal at the office? No, not likely. Well, maybe just a few helpers. Perhaps they’ve just figured out how to work faster or smarter, getting more done in less time. It’s a topic several LinkedIn Influencers weighed in on this week. Here’s what two of them had to say.
Travis Bradberry, President at TalentSmart
Think working all hours of day and night makes you more successful and productive? Think again. A recent study out of Stanford University “found that productivity per hour declines sharply when the workweek exceeds 50 hours, and productivity drops off so much after 55 hours that there’s no point in working anymore”, wrote Bradberry in his post How Successful People Work Less and Get More Done.
He points to Spencer Rascoff, the co-founder of Hotwire.com and chief executive office of real estate website Zillow as an example. “What’s the one thing that [he] refuses to do on the weekend? Work — at least, in the traditional sense,” Bradberry wrote. Rascoff never goes into the office and checks email only at night, using his weekends to unplug and think, not work.
“Successful people know the importance of shifting gears on the weekend to relaxing and rejuvenating activities” and that ultimately means they work less, he wrote.
How, exactly, can you be more successful while working less? Bradberry offers 10 things more successful people do on the weekend — other than work — to set themselves up for a better week ahead. Among them:
“They disconnect. Disconnecting is the most important weekend strategy on this list, because if you can’t find a way to remove yourself electronically from your work Friday evening through Monday morning, then you’ve never really left work,” Bradberry wrote.
“They minimise chores. Chores have a funny habit of completely taking over your weekends. When this happens, you lose the opportunity to relax and reflect. What’s worse is that a lot of chores feel like work, and if you spend all weekend doing them, you just put in a seven-day workweek,” he wrote. “Schedule your chores like you would anything else during the week, and if you don’t complete them during the allotted time, you move on and finish them the following weekend.”
“They schedule micro-adventures. Buy tickets to a concert or play, or get reservations for that cool new hotel that just opened downtown. Instead of running on a treadmill, plan a hike. Try something you haven’t done before or perhaps something you haven’t done in a long time,” Bradberry wrote. “Knowing that you have something interesting planned for Saturday… will significantly improve your mood throughout the week.”
“They designate mornings as ‘me’ time. It can be difficult to get time to yourself on the weekends, especially if you have family. Finding a way to engage in an activity you’re passionate about first thing in the morning can pay massive dividends in happiness and cleanliness of mind,” he wrote. “Your mind achieves peak performance two-to-four hours after you wake up, so get up early to do something physical, and then sit down and engage in something mental while your mind is at its peak.”
Jason Binn, founder and chief executive at DuJour, chief advisor at Gilt.com
“These days, we’re hailing cabs and blazing through entire TV series faster than ever before,” wrote Binn in his post How to do Almost Everything Faster. “The latest crop of time-saving apps, tools and services are on the cutting edge of efficiency.”
What are some of the most useful tools and ways to do things faster? Binn offers several. Among them:
“Finish your reading list faster. Instead of reading text line by line, the hyped-up speed-reading technology Spritz streams each word individually at rapid-fire speeds that you control. The method lets you read up to 1,000 words per minute; in theory that means you could start and finish a Harry Potter book in an hour, War and Peace in a day,” Binn wrote. That cuts out time spent reading across a page, turning a page or swiping on an e-reader.
“Restock your fridge faster. Amazon just started rolling out its handheld grocery ordering device, the Dash, into people’s homes. Say or scan items — anything from produce to everyday household items — that you need to replenish, view the list on your desktop or mobile phone (Dash works with your AmazonFresh account) and schedule delivery,” he wrote. You’ve just saved a trip to the grocery store or a local delivery website.
“Pay for your Starbucks latte faster. Starbucks recently rolled out a ‘shake to pay’ feature on its app that — as the name suggests — instantly brings up the barcode needed to pay at the register with a shake of your phone,” Binn wrote. Save time pressing pay buttons on the app or fishing out a gift or loyalty card.