Effective Then Efficient
When it comes to creating improvement there are two primary value drivers, which are making things more effective and more efficient. These two ideas are so intertwined that they often are stated next to each other, and even used in place of each other. But not only are they very different things, there’s a specific order that allows for things to truly generate value in your life.
Being effective is about doing the right things. It’s about knowing what things are the greatest contributors to the outcomes you want and focusing on doing those. It’s about quieting the distractions so that the direction of your effort is maximized. Like hitting a bulls-eye, being effective allows for your performance to create the exact results you were looking for because you have successfully narrowed things down. Being more effective is an evaluation on what you’re doing and what’s coming from it.
Being efficient is about minimizing the time and energy spent to fulfill a task. It involves using automation, templates, and reproducible systems to ensure repeatable quality. It’s looking at all the steps and determining what is most essential and where processes can be better. Being efficient is about maximizing the output from your input within a specific task, and in that way it’s more about how you do things rather than what you’re doing.
With that understanding, the order here matters. If you focus too quickly on optimizing a process, it’s very possible that you get very good at doing the wrong thing. That’s why you must first identify what the most effective things to do are, what truly moves the needle unlike anything else, and then once you’re confident you're getting results you can focus on how to make that activity easier and more scalable.
This applies in business and life. In business, it doesn’t make sense to create a system around how to set the agenda for a certain call when that call isn’t valuable in the first place. In life, it will not be valuable for you to build out a full mindfulness practice before you even try it and now that it’s helping you reduce anxiety.
The priority is to first figure out what works, what is most effective in creating a desired result. Then after you've proven that, you can make it more efficient so that it gets to the reproducible level you desire. But you must do it in that order or you might be wasting a lot of time and effort.
If you want to be more effective, and efficient, and to accelerate your self-growth so that you can experience the fulfillment of living meaningful days, I can tell you more about the 3 step process I’ve put together that gets you from stalled in a plateau to full-life balance and prosperity in 60 days.