For many of us in the beef cattle business, we do what we do because we love the land and our livestock. An added bonus is being our own boss and calling the shots. What separates the most successful ranchers from the average ones? It may come down to how well you manage your day-to-day business.
In a recent Forbes article titled, “15 surprising things productive people do differently,” Kevin Kruse interviewed 200+ ultra-productive people including seven billionaires, 13 Olympians, 20 straight A students and more than 200 successful entrepreneurs.
He asked every individual one question, “What is your number one secret to productivity?” Following the interviews, he categorized the responses into a list of 15 tips.
While we may not be destined to compete for the gold or to have billion-dollar bank accounts, we can certainly become more efficient in how we run our businesses, and in turn, it will open up time to enjoy our families, take care of our health and prioritize the activities that mean the most to us.
Here are eight tips from Kruse’s list of 15 habits of very productive entrepreneurs:
1. Energy is everything
Sleep well, exercise and eat healthfully. The right fuel, activities and recovery will help you have more energy to get through the day, says Kruse.
2. They practice a consistent morning routine
Over the years, I’ve talked to many successful multi-generation ranching families who hold early weekday meetings to get everyone on the same page and communicating plans for the day. Morning meetings usually start early over a cup of coffee, and after everyone has discussed the big items for the day, it’s time to get to work.
3. They touch things only once
Do you ignore the large stack of mail on your kitchen table? Do you read emails and forget to respond until much later? These are mistakes to avoid if you want to be like the most productive people. Instead, if it’s a 5-10 minute task, do it immediately and clear your time and workspace for bigger things.
4. They delegate almost everything
What’s the most efficient way to get a task done? Is there a way to outsource it, so you can focus on bigger projects? Delegate and don’t micro-manage once you’ve assigned a task.
5. They say ‘no’ to almost everything
Sometimes we’re over scheduled with busy activities that just don’t pay. Kruse writes, “Remember, you only have 1,440 minutes in every day. Don’t give them away easily.”
6. They use a notebook
Kruse writes, “In one interview, Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis said, ‘Always carry a notebook. Write everything down…That is a million dollar lesson they don’t teach you in business school!’ Ultra-productive people free their mind by writing everything down.”
7. They make it home for dinner
Not always easy when there are calving cows or hay to put up, but prioritizing family is an important element to success. Know what you value and value the people who support your endeavors.
8. They beat procrastination
Don’t wait until the last minute to do something. Anticipate what might trip you up in the future, and find a solution to beat your future self before you sabotage your intentions to get something done.
Whether you’ve fallen behind on record-keeping or you wish you had more time to read the paper and study the markets or you continually push off that big building project on the ranch for “next spring,” these tips could perhaps help you accomplish more each day and spend more time doing the things you love.
The opinions of Amanda Radke are not necessarily those of beefmagazine.com or Farm Progress.