One of the main challenges for introverted entrepreneurs is being as productive as possible when your inborn temperament is contemplative, reflective, and requires plenty of alone time to recharge your energy level.
So here are five powerful ways to amplify your productivity as an introverted entrepreneur:
Understand Your Work Style
Understanding your work style is critical to high performance as an introvert, as it directly impacts your productivity. You can maximize your time and energy by understanding your strengths and limitations.
Assess Your Work Style
To better understand your optimal work style, ask yourself questions like:
- Am I most productive in the morning, mid-day, or evening?
- When are the best times for me to be alone and recharge?
- How much time do I typically need to get re-energized?
- Do I work better in silence or with some background noise?
- What kinds of snacks deplete or enhance my energy?
Maximize Productivity Based on Your Work Style
Once you better understand your optimal work style, arrange your days to promote maximum productivity.
For example, if you’re most productive in the morning, dedicate time blocks to work on top-priority tasks at the start of your day. Also, if you work better with some background noise but not with music or the like, get an ambient noisemaker to run while you are deep in your work.
Technology can empower introverted entrepreneurs to boost productivity by automating repetitive tasks, streamlining workflows, and communicating with others more efficiently.
With the right apps, you can save time while focusing on what matters most.
Here are a few apps that can help introverted entrepreneurs boost productivity:
- Trello: A Kanban-style project management app that enables you to organize and track your projects.
- Freedom: Blocks websites and apps that distract you from working.
- Slack: An instant messaging tool that helps you connect with your team to collaborate on projects.
- Zoom: A video conferencing tool that makes it easy to meet with others virtually.
- RescueTime: An app that tracks your online activity and provides insights into what’s keeping you from being more productive.
When incorporating technology into your work routine, it’s essential to do it in a way that best suits your work style. For example, if you notice you’re in the habit of checking your social media accounts before settling into focus on a specific project, implementing RescueTime will help you eliminate those distractions so you can regain all the valuable time you lose surfing social sites before working.
One of the best ways to increase productivity for introverted entrepreneurs is to maintain focus on tasks and projects by eliminating as many potential distractions as possible.
According to a study by Gloria Mark at the University of California, Irvine, it takes an average of 23 minutes to fully regain focus after being distracted. If you’re like most business owners, you’re bombarded with distractions throughout your days. Some big. Some small. But most are totally unnecessary.
Here are some tips for eliminating distractions so you can stay focused:
- Set specific work hours and sticking to them. This will help you establish a routine and establish boundaries to stay focused.
- Turn off notifications on your phone.
- Close irrelevant tabs in your web browser.
- Place a “Do Not Disturb” sign on your door.
- Use noise-canceling headphones or an ambient noise maker.
- Designate set times to check your email throughout the day.
Most successful entrepreneurs have the attitude, “If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.” But the fact is, no one can do everything themselves, and if you’re a business owner, then doing lower-tier tasks eats the time you could use on higher-tier tasks.
By delegating lower-tier tasks, you can focus on the things within your high-value skillset that distinguish you from your competitors. This way, you’ll not only get more done in less time but the things you do will likely be done with more attention to detail.
If you’re struggling with trusting someone else to do work that you’ll ultimately be responsible for, consider starting with low-risk or knowledge-specific tasks such as these:
- Administrative duties (filing, answering phone calls, data entry, scheduling appointments, etc.)
- Customer service
- Email management
- Website maintenance
- Bookkeeping and accounting
When delegating, set up precise protocols and systems to follow, communicate clear expectations, and provide the necessary resources for your subordinate to do their job effectively. Also, check in with them and review their performance.
Collaborate with Others
Okay, if you’re a card-carrying introverted entrepreneur, you probably cringe at the thought of collaborating. After all, introverts prefer to work independently, observe rather than interact, and think deeply rather than bounce ideas back and forth with other people.
But, undoubtedly, two heads are often better than one, and three or four are often better than two.
Plus, when working with others, you get the advantage of their experiences, insights, and perspectives. Which means options and opportunities increase.
Here are some tips for collaborating with others in a way that’s comfortable for introverted entrepreneurs:
- Communicate your expectations and ideas clearly. This minimizes misunderstandings which would otherwise result in reiterating for clarification and re-doing projects that weren’t done right the first time.
- Before collaborating with others, spend time thinking about exactly what you want to gain from the collaboration and the best ways to achieve those aims.
- Set some boundaries, as in how much time you can commit to collaboration sessions and which subjects to focus on rather than veering off-topic.
- Consider using an app like Zoom to collaborate virtually instead of in person, as this could save time (no traveling) and is typically the preferred mode for introverts.
- Take some alone time before the collaboration session to recharge so you’ll be energized and ready to contribute when the time comes.
As an introverted entrepreneur, you have unique inherent strengths, such as being detail-oriented, a deft problem solver, and an intuitive decision-maker. However, you likely have traits that interfere with productivity, such as daydreaming, depletion of energy after socializing, and wanting to do everything yourself to ensure the job’s done right.
But in today’s fast-paced business world, productivity matters more than ever.
For introverted entrepreneurs, productivity is all about discovering what works best for you and implementing strategies that empower you to get more done in less time, and in ways you’re comfortable with. All of which are 100% doable.
John Langenfeld is an introvert who explores psychology tips, tricks, and insights so fellow introverts can understand themselves and others better while learning impactful ways to live happy, rewarding lives. You can visit his website at johnlangenfeld.com or connect with him on Facebook or Twitter.
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