Profiting from productivity

Most of your customers are task-rich but extremely time-poor. Ask anyone how they are these days, and the default reply is ‘busy’. Most of us are desperate to find a way to get through our massive to-do list more quickly, and this problem doesn’t seem to be going away.

As a supplier, you can leverage your customers’ desire for productivity by showing how you can help them to do things faster, and to claim back some of their personal time and balance.

Around the turn of this century, when the internet really took off, so too did our need for greater productivity. Eat That Frog by Brian Tracey, Getting Things Done by David Allen, and The Four-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss are all classic reads on how to get more done in a shorter amount of time.

A few years ago, when introducing unlimited holidays for Virgin employees, Richard Branson explained that ‘time is the new money’ – and he should know. One of the busiest people on the planet (and outside it) he controls 400 companies, including Virgin Galactic, and is a humanitarian as well as a sought-after author and public speaker.

Productivity is a universal problem for people like Branson who are in positions of power.

For example, the Executive Time Use Project, a recent study by the London School of Economics and Harvard Business School into the day-to-day schedules of more than 500 CEOs from around the world, found that executives spent roughly 18 hours of a 55-hour workweek in meetings, and only six hours working alone. The CEOs surveyed all reported a desire for more “alone time”.

Email is another huge time drain.  A study by Palo Alto technology firm Radicati found that worldwide, the average worker sends and receives 122 emails a day. Another study suggests that Executives receive triple this amount of email – about 300 emails a day. One of my clients, the COO of a human services organisation, once told me he received upwards of 400.

Here are five ways to win by showing customer how you’ll get more done in less time.

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