As a millennial, I am naturally a productive individual, and I prioritize unrelentingly and implement the prioritization. I have, in the recent past, fallen short of achieving an overarching purpose to my productivity levels. Mental health is extremely important, but I was sacrificing mental health for increased productivity even though my productivity didn’t have a clear purpose.
Well, I am aware that there are some tasks that I have to accomplish; also, I understand that at times I fail to look back and ensure that the aim of my productivity is for the greater good of the company.
For instance, I surveyed my team to understand how I could improve as a leader. One of the teammates had this to say: ‘You are very ambitious, but you are not driven. Great leaders are both ambitious and driven’. The teammate was spot on!
I am highly ambitious, but my ambition doesn’t clearly lead to purpose, and I need to improve. The main objective of this article is to inform you of three things that tied purpose to my productivity. These include setting clear, specific goals, planning properly, and prioritizing the vision and mission.
1) Set Clear, Specific Goals:
Part of my earlier challenges was setting clear objectives that would be measured easily. We would have clear goals to develop a product, but before long, I would discover that the demand I expected for the product was non-existent. I found out that participation alone was insufficient, and that setting clear goals based on purpose, passion, and values were necessary for us to succeed.
Today, we concentrate on small goals to discover whether the product is in demand. We clearly lay out what we expect to gain by developing the product, test the hypothesis, and the product’s demand. Creating small specific goals are very helpful in our daily situations as well.
After we have precise data to show the product will be a hit, we then develop the product. By setting clear and specific goals, we have experienced more productivity, and it has become easily achievable.
Taking it a notch higher, we set bi-annual goals to assist us in attaining higher productivity. To make the goals easy to recall, we choose 4 “S”s for 2020. Besides, I love what Jeff Boss said in his Forbes article on goal setting, ‘Having a clear, compelling goal mobilizes your focus toward actionable behavior. In other words, goal setting should motivate you.’
2) Plan Properly
From what I have found out, minor projects don’t need tons of planning. For a small project, you might only need logic five-sentences long with minimum variability. For major projects, there has to be purposeful planning to ensure their success.
A recent research study found non-mortgage debt-to-income ratio in the United States is a staggering 49% in 2019. That number is up from just over 30% in 2004. As such, we decided to build a debt payoff planner to help people eliminate that debt. I realized that the debt payoff planner was complicated. As such, I needed to have more thorough, purposeful planning for the app to work efficiently for everyone.
It is a complicated matter to develop something that will assist people in eliminating debt and saving money more than the existing apps; therefore, in-depth planning had to be done.
3) Prioritize with Your Mission and Vision
‘Helping to take the pain out of personal finance’ by offering simple solutions was the starting mission and vision. To be fair, it wasn’t such a bad mission and vision. After one of our top engineers read “Made To Stick, I found out that it was challenging to filter everything we had built through the vision.
Consequently, we upgraded our vision to help make debt freedom easier, cheaper, and faster. Now we have a clear purpose, and we can easily recheck our concepts, this aims to ensure that everything we do helps the user to attain debt freedom in a cheaper, quicker and easier way.
Having a clear purpose has helped us to be increasingly productive because we used to deprioritize issues that didn’t help us to attain that purpose.
About Ben Tejes
Ben is a personal finance writer with a background in consulting, high-tech, and fintech startups. He enjoys covering topics such as budgeting, debt freedom techniques, and fintech. He also writes for Saved By The Cents and Ascend. In his free time, Ben enjoys spending time with his three young daughters and exploring new hikes. Connect with Saved By the Cents on his Twitter or Instagram.