“I am busy” is almost always heard in a conversation or even self talk, but that doesn’t mean that one is being productive. Next time when you say that you are busy, think whether you are being effective and efficient or simply being redundant in your tasks which keeps you thinking you are constantly busy.
Effectiveness is doing the things that gets you closer to your goals. Don’t confuse it with efficiency. Efficiency and effectiveness are two different things. Efficiency is performing a given task (whether important or not) in the most economical and timely manner possible. For example: Consider a salesman going from door-to-door to all his customers without wasting time. He is efficient but not effective, but if the same salesman tried to sell his product by using a different approach such as sending emails first to all his customers and then filter the ones who are interested in his product. This allows him to be effective and efficient with his time and energy.
It’s rightly said in The 4-Hour Workweek book, there are two truisms to keep in mind:
- Doing something unimportant well doesn’t make it important.
- Requiring a lot of time does not make a task important.
Efficiency is still important, but it is useless unless applied to the right things that produce effectiveness as well. So next time when you work on something, think to be effective than just being efficient.
The secret of greatness is simple: do better work than any other man in your field and keep on doing it. -Wilfred A. Peterson