Two Streams of Productivity

Productivity is getting things done. There are two streams of productivity in which you need to work, at the same time. The problem is, these two streams are at odds with each other. Mastering both is the key to personal and professional productivity.

Two Streams of Productivity

The first stream of productivity is “doing more, more efficiently.” We calendar, list, batch, and turn off our phones to concentrate. We push through our lists and get a lot of detailed work done. If I didn’t use this kind of productivity, my house would never be clean and emails wouldn’t be answered. 

The second stream of productivity is “doing less for more impact.” It’s nearly the opposite of the first stream, and much more difficult to accomplish.

While “doing more, more efficiently” is about getting as much done as possible, “doing less for more impact” is about focusing on the most important things.

Two Streams of Productivity – The problem is, these two streams are at odds with each other. Mastering both is the key to personal and professional productivity. Click To Tweet

Urgent, unimportant things scream out to me to do more, faster! Non-urgent, important and impactful things require me to slow down, focus, and do less for more impact.

Often it’s helpful to begin with “doing more, more efficiently” to clear a bit of space for us to “do less for more impact.” The trick is to make sure we move between the two streams. We get a bit addicted to the adrenaline rush of more, faster. Less with impact doesn’t feel as exciting without the quick wins of checking off tasks.

In your personal and professional life, consider what is important and focus on those things.

  • What are your non-urgent, impactful things you need to focus on?
  • What have you been putting off for “when I have time” that you could now do?
  • What’s the greater focus you want to go into this week with?

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    Keith is President of Creative Results Management. He helps busy leaders multiply their impact. Keith is the author of several books including The COACH Model for Christian Leaders.

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