Jason Jennings in his national bestseller “it’s not the BIG that eat the SMALL…it’s the FAST that eat the SLOW,” taught that working longer or harder has less effect on proper execution and success than does eliminating tasks that have no real effect on a projects success. Removing speed bumps (improve effectiveness, efficiency, results) is about getting to the bone of what needs done and forgetting everything else. To see the ‘bone’ (or meat if you’re a carnivore), you must understand the desired outcome and the moving parts that ‘report directly’ to it. Too many tasks ultimately means a lack of understanding.
Chris Brogan ‘unfollowed’ his 131,000 Twitter followers and wrote about it in his The Great Twitter Unfollow Experiment of 2011. Why? Because he understood clearly that more is less, that quality leads to desired results that can be managed and sustained. He will gradually add back those followers that make sense. All other followers… well, he won’t be following you any longer.
Your homework is to sit down for an hour of absolutely no interruption and look closely at your task list in the context of what you’re seeking to accomplish. Ask yourself “If this task were removed, would it make any difference to the outcome of the project?” If the answer is no, dump it immediately. If the answer is ‘kinda’, look to see if the task could be combined with another for better efficiency.
I’m not a project management ‘purist.’ I’m a practical, black and white kind of guy. I don’t understand gray, nor does anyone else I know whether they admit it or not. Make your life easier. Be more successful in everything you do. Demand that everything and everyone requesting your time and attention, prove that it’s the best use of your time. If it’s not, you know what to do.