An alternative to always working harder

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How to get the same (or better) outcome with less effort.

As human beings, we’re only productive for a finite period of time each day. When you go beyond that, you can maintain output but not quality. There are countless studies and research papers proving that. So if more time working doesn’t equal more productive output, what can you do?

I’ve always been fascinated by the word “leverage”. It is without a doubt the most powerful word in the dictionary when it comes to progress. There are hard ways to do things and smart ways to do them. You know the saying “work smarter not harder”, right? Well, that relates to leverage.

Read Also: What Are The Key Elements To A Successful Product Strategy?

What is leverage then? Leverage means being able to do more and more with less and less. It means getting more and more quality output and results while exerting less mental effort or physical output over time.

The great thing about leverage is that it can be applied to all areas of your life, not just work. You can apply leverage to your fitness. To learning. To your investments. The list goes on.

Leverage is a word you should think about daily. If you’re always thinking about how to produce better results with less work, you can accomplish what you need to get done in far less time.

How can I get the same or better outcome with less effort?

It took me a good 5 years to really understand leverage and where it can be applied. As I started to deliberately ask myself “how can I apply leverage to get the same outcome with less work?”, my progress started to explode. When I launched PeopleSpark for example, I did a heap of stuff differently and probably condensed 2 years of work into 6 months using leverage.

Now before I take on anything new, I spend a considerable amount of time figuring out how and where I can get a heap of leverage. It’s a habit that will stick with me for life and it makes everything easier.

Here are some examples of applying leverage to get the same (or better) volume and quality of output in much less time:

  • Business: Leverage the trust and reach of 5 influencers or advisors your potential clients look to for help and ask them to recommend your product on an ongoing basis in exchange for equity. You can access a built-in audience who will be genuinely interested in your product.
  • Business: If you’re a first-time CEO, hire an experienced CEO to grow your company from $1M to $10M in revenue. If you can find someone who has grown a company to $50M+ revenue, then getting you from $1M to $10M will be a walk in the park for them.
  • Business: Outsource everything that doesn’t differentiate your company from competitors, such as accounting, business operations, I.T. systems, benefits and insurance. Keep your team small and focused on creating what matters — a great product that’s better.
  • Learning: When you want to learn anything new, don’t “fail your way to success”. Find the person or people who are literally the best in the world at that new skill and have them teach you how they do it. That could be through books, Youtube videos, seminars, etc. You’ll condense their 10 years of experience into a few hours or days of learning.
  • Learning: Don’t take advice from anyone who hasn’t done what you want to do. Don’t take relationship advice from a divorced relationship coach. Don’t take parenting advice from a person without kids, etc.
  • Investing: Don’t take financial advice from someone paid a commission to recommend investment products. If you want to build a $1M portfolio in the next 10 years, find an advisor who has built his or her own $1M portfolio in 3-5 years and get them to teach you how they did it.
  • Fitness: Instead of going to the gym and fumbling your way through a workout program for a few months, invest up front in a personal trainer who already has the body you want and gets them to teach you not only the right exercises but also their diet and mindset too.

David didn’t beat Goliath by working harder. He used leverage. That same analogy applies to almost everything in life. You just have to be smart about how you approach things and always assume there’s an easier way to get the same outcome before diving in. Because in most cases, there is.

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