While Doing great work may get you noticed, How can you be Outstanding?

As a Leader, you may already give your best and hope that your efforts are good enough. While good performance is critical in leadership, it may not be enough. People are doing great work as well, but what can make you outstanding?

How can you be memorable? How do you make a lasting impression? What makes you different from others? Here is how to make your efforts stand out.

Innovate and Reinvent

It is important to show creativity and innovation. Leadership is about innovating and reinventing. There lies the opportunity to be outstanding. By making useful contributions and asking intelligent and useful questions, you bring a different perspective to the table. Demonstrate that you can think outside the box. Most importantly, make sure that your creativity and innovation benefits the work.

Have Great Attitude

Be positive and enthusiastic and engage with people ethically. No matter how your day is, it’s important to stay upbeat. Generally, people tend to enjoy working with pleasant, encouraging and constructive people, rather than complaining, negative, and rude people who are not constructive.

Contribute Significantly

Always show up prepared, by doing your homework and gathering relevant resources. Don’t show up complacent. If you are actively engaged in the work process, you will make significant contributions to the team effort. You might also want to voluntarily contribute in addition to your mandatory work load. Do more to be relevant and outstanding.

Build Relationships

Be friendly, and let people get to know you. Have an approachable persona, build relationships and trust. Be dedicated to showing interest in the lives of those you work with. This is an added thing to how you work, and it makes you memorable and likeable. It’s also important to have a mentor who networks you with his or her contacts.  A knowledgeable and connected​ mentor can be a huge resource to help you build relationships and connect you with like-minds in your field. Relationships make you stay relevant.

Communicate Effectively

Many people may be competent professionally, but lack effective communication skills.  As a leader, you have to pay careful attention to how you express yourself not only in writing, but also during face-to-face conversations, and on the phone. In communicating, be confident, respectful and clear. Always strive to be a good listener by paying attention, maintaining polite eye contact, and striving to understand what people are saying (you may ask questions to clarify). Developing good communication skills make you an outstanding leader.

Be Result Oriented

Results have a loud Voice. People pay more attention to what you do than what you say. Put all your efforts into action. Pay attention to the actions and skills required per task. What can you do exceptionally well? Also construct a milestones list. Don’t be complacent or wait to be pushed. Have outstanding work ethic.

If You Don’t Blow your Trumpet, Others Will Make it a Spittoon

In as much as it is not done annoyingly, it is great to promote yourself, and let people know about your outstanding work. Achievements make you stand out and hasten career advancement. Promote yourself. Have a killer elevator pitch. Do you have a great LinkedIn profile? Also ask people to recommend you for your skills. Strive to make a great impression all the time.

To become Outstanding, Trust your Journey

The key is to find what is different about you and capitalize on it. Pay attention to what you do best, what you bring to the table, what is special about you. Be remarkable, memorable and authentic. Be professional and reliable. Be creative, interesting, and show talent. Let what is different about you be visible, work on cultivating that uniqueness and you will be outstanding.


These 10 things can help you save time and achieve more in 2018 if you do them

If we said “He wasted my LIFE” instead of “He wasted my TIME” perhaps we will understand the value of TIME.
– Yours truly

In the spirit of the title, I am not going to waste your time. Instead, I’ll help you save time and get more done this year. This will only take 6 minutes.

Do you feel like twenty-four(24) hours is not enough to achieve all you plan and set out to do in a day? Or do you feel like some tasks are unncessary and simply a waste of your time? Do you wish you could do less, yet get more accomplished? If you feel any of these ways sometimes or every time, then this article is for you and you should read on. If you don’t, you probably should stop reading right now, because this will be another waste of your precious time(and I won’t like to have that on my conscience).

[Tweet “In the spirit of the title, I am not going to waste your time. Instead, I’ll help you save time and get more done this year. This will only take 6 minutes.”]

Let’s cut to the chase! Here are ten(10) things that can save you time and get more done:

Touch Type or Swipe to type

Touch typing (also called touch type or touch keyboarding) is typing without using the sense of sight to find the keys. Specifically, a touch typist will know their location on the keyboard through muscle memory.

I touch type as I write this article. You can imagine that I don’t have to look at the keyboard while I type (my speed is increased, and I only look at my screen and concentrate on getting the idea out of my mind). Sometimes I shut my eyes and think deeply while I type what comes to my mind. Another finger is reaching for the next key, even before I press the first one.
You may be thinking: ‘But I don’t know how to Touch Type, and it might take too long to learn'(talk about the days of learning typewriting in school). I have good news for you: “You can learn it, and in a month or less too!”. Dedicate just an hour a day to it and you’ll be great in no time. All you need are software like Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing for PC users and Klavaro for Mac and Linux users.

[Tweet “I have good news for you: “You can learn it, and in a month or less too!”.”]

What about your mobile phone? Yes you can swipe from one key to another on the keypad instead of tapping each time. There are many keyboards to choose from: Swype, Swift Key, Gboard, TouchPal, etc.

swifitkey-stats

I personally use Swift Key Keyboard and I’m 26% more efficient. You can see from my records here that I’ve saved a whooping 34,886 taps this month alone.
We spend most of our time sending emails, replying to chats, SMS and other written form of communication, and it happens on our mobile phones, laptops and desktops computers. It is wise to save time.

Reduce or Avoid Digital Distractions

I am looking for an article about Bees. I open my browser and search. The first search result returned “Quest for a Super Bee”; an article by Nat Geo wild on Facebook. I open it and read. Next thing, I notice I have new friend requests, I am checking it out. Next I am checking my wall for those 30 seconds, funny and interesting videos. Then I click a link to some site and see something else that’s interesting. 20 minutes is gone. I have not completed my Bee Research.

Next day, I am serious. No distractions! I am looking for an article on Company Valuations. I get redirected to Forbes website. I don’t have time to look into it at the moment and I tell myself that I’ll come back for it. I forget.

Most of us can relate to these experiences. You can reduce the Digital Distractions or avoid it altogether and save pretty much anything you see online in a little app called Pocket. Pocket allows you save anything; pictures, articles, videos, tweets, Facebook posts, for later reading. It’s like a small pocket where you put things you want to see later. The best part? You don’t need Wi-Fi to access anything you saved, making it the ultimate hack for a long flight!

Save time by reducing the amount of time Impromptu Meetings take

“Hey Sophia! Do you have a minute? There’s this idea I have been thinking about…” How many of us have had those kind of seemingly harmless chit-chats develop into long talks and taking up to an hour? I see many hands  😁.

Here’s what you can do:

As soon as someone starts talking to you and you didn’t plan for it, look at your wristwatch or your phone clock before you look the person in the eye and reply. It makes the person a little uncomfortable taking your time and want to finish up talking quickly. And it makes you conscious of your time. If the person talks for more than a minute, you can politely interrupt with a “This conversation looks like it’s gonna take more than a minute. Would you like to schedule a meeting?” or “This is coming at me all at once. I don’t want to miss out any detail. Why not put it in an email and let me give it the proper attention it deserves?”

Do some little tasks as they come and don’t postpone it.

By dealing with some nagging issues as they arrive, you get to prevent them from growing into something bigger. But be careful! If you try to clear all your tasks as soon as they come, you are not being efficient. Try to cut, and if you can’t, then delegate.

[Tweet “By dealing with some nagging issues as they arrive, you get to prevent them from growing into something bigger.”]

Avoid meetings whenever possible

Let’s be honest. Meetings take more time than we expect and most of them are unnecessary. Use e-mail instead of face-to-face meetings to solve problems.

If meetings are unavoidable, keep the following in mind:

  • Go in with a clear set of objectives.
  • Set a countdown timer on your phone at the beginning of a meeting that you convened. When the time is up and you hear the beep, you’ll be compelled to roundoff or bring the meeeting to a close.
  • If you’re not the convener, try to beg to leave early and request for the minutes.

Reduce the drudgery of writing

Do you do lots of writing? Use the Hemmingway app instead and save yourself some time. That’s what I’m using to string this article together as we speak(write). It is a great little tool that checks your grammar and highlights potential sentence danger zones as you write. Give it a type here!

Be realistic about Time Management

Time management is not really about time management as it is about energy management. Structure your day into time blocks, taking into consideration when you have the most energy. Give yourself plenty of time to get things done (and include breaks).

Automate!

Remember the saying?

The shortest pen is better than the longest memory.

It still holds true. You’d expect me to say “write it down in a book”. Nope! “Type it in your phone’s Google Calendar”. You’ll get the following benefits:

  • It can be found on your PC or laptop at work or home(Google Synchronizes it. You don’t have to do a thing!)
  • You can add an alert to it; like ask it to trigger your phone alarm when it is time or send you an email to remind you.
  • You can choose if you want your reminder to be time-based or location-based. i.e. Do you want the alarm to ring when it is 4pm or when you are at the office or market?
  • You may not carry your note with you, but you certainly carry your cellphone wherever you go.

Streamline the way you consume content

We all love to read good content from news to interesting articles like this one. But it can easily take away hours of time that we’re supposed to dedicate to more important tasks. Feedly is a tool that will enable you to collect content from all your favourite websites in one place to read at a later time(it’s sorta like making all your websites visit you instead of visiting them).

You can subscribe to as many RSS Feeds as you like, organise content into relevant categories and even take actions on the articles you read, like share them to a friend and family.

Keep up with our website for more productive articles like this one

This is the easiest to do. And the more you do it, the more time you’ll save.

[Tweet “This is the easiest to do. And the more you do it, the more time you’ll save.”]

You can reach me in my e-mail if you have any questions or need help to set up any of the above on your phones or PCs. You can reach me at benson.st@awlo.org.


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