Home > All About ME, innovation > Time Bandit – 5 Steps to Increasing Bandwidth

Time Bandit – 5 Steps to Increasing Bandwidth

December 26, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

There are blogs about time management. Increasing efficiencies. And creating a life / work balance. But I couldn’t find that many posts about “bandwidth”. I often have people tell me I have incredible bandwidth; and I always attributed that to one of two things: Either 1) Much of the work I was doing I had done previously and thus could work more quickly than a newcomer. 2) Maybe I was just “quicker” than the average Joe. Turns out, I was wrong. It was neither of these things.

This post explains how to make the most of your time; more importantly – increase your bandwidth while maintaning or bettering the quality of your work.

1. Get rid of your preconceived notions of separating ‘work’ and ‘personal life’. Whether we choose to admit it or not, every year this line becomes more blurred. With the advent and expectations that come with Blackberry’s, remote log ins, and other communication tools, people work 70% more now than they did 20 years ago. Instead of becoming annoyed and frustrated with the onslaught of technological communication tools, I found a way to use them in a way that makes me more productive. And we all know that “responding to emails immediately” rarely increases production, so this is not what I’m referring to.

2. Know when and how you produce. I’m an entrepreneur first, marketer second, and sales person 3rd. In any of these roles, three traits have set me apart; being ambitious enough to create strategically and then execute on tactics at near real time. That is “how” I produce. When do I produce? all day everyday. My least productive time in coming up with strategic ideas or plans is AT work; but I don’t have an exact time. Entrepreneurs gain business ideas and / or insights from anyone or anything. For me, an idea is usually sparked mid-conversation or while watching TV. I don’t know “why” this is, but would presume it’s because I’m an extrovert and clearly derive my motivations from other people.

3. Commit to being productive. Now that you’ve gotten rid of your preconceived notions and found out when you’re most productive, embrace the moment when a thought or idea comes to you. Don’t ignore it. Don’t say, “I’ll write it down later”. Commit to yourself that you will take advantage of your ideas and execute.

4. BE productive. Utilize the new technology. When you have an idea – type it out. Email it to yourself. Download an app like evernote. Record your thoughts an your phone. Whatever the communication medium is, use it. For me, I email myself all ideas I have. No matter how good or bad they are at the time. What may sound like a bad idea at one time may be the seed of a great idea or future business. Communicate it to yourself at the time, for later on you can build around it. For me, I have bursts of creativity, sometimes I even map out “task lists” in my head. What I do now is email them to myself. When I get to my computer, a task list, an idea, a marketing plan – whatever it is – it’s THERE. I copy and paste it into a doc, review / edit it, and the ‘hard part’ is done. I take on twice as many clients as other people I know because I commit to myself I will be productive when my brain is producing. I never put my creativity on hold.

5. Practice and embrace your productivity. When you’re in the car or at dinner, yes – this may be when you have a burst of creativity. Don’t get annoyed it’s “not the right time”. Get EXCITED. If you’re in the car, pull over. If you’re at dinner, excuse yourself and run to the restroom. The first few times, it may take you a while to get your thoughts communicated to yourself at a later time but as you do this more and more, you’ll find you’re able to send yourself an idea as well as corresponding execution plans in just 2 minutes. The faster your brain works, the more you’ll get onto paper.

  1. December 26, 2010 at 11:01 am

    What a great post — and how affirming to hear this message from someone who is not me! I call myself a mobile worker because the ideas are always flowing no matter where I am. Sounds like you and I could be poster children for the bed-bath-bus theory (you know the one that says this is where the world’s greatest ideas are incubated).

    • December 27, 2010 at 8:56 am

      Ha – or maybe poster children for “ADHD” ( ; Do you have any other ways to keep track of your ideas than what I posted?

      • December 27, 2010 at 2:43 pm

        What you posted in #4 is really important to me. When an idea or a question strikes, I open MemoPad in my blackberry and type it in right away. That way I can either return to the work I was doing or the sleep I was attempting before the idea so rudely interjected itself into my thoughts. It syncs automatically with Outlook so everything is easily available whether I’m in the office or working remotely.

      • December 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm

        Good idea – thanks! I’m going to start using the memo pad. Seems like a more efficient, concise way to keep everything together.

  2. December 27, 2010 at 11:54 am

    Hi Jamie

    Congratulations on a Boxing Day post – now that is dedication.

    Your first point is something that most of us are still fighting against – “Get rid of your preconceived notions of separating ‘work’ and ‘personal life.”

    Things have changed but most of us still think 9 to 5 and then stop work.
    Computers, internet, emails, remote working have all come together to blur the dividing line.
    Put that report on a memory stick and finish it at home.
    Is that a good thing?
    Not sure, but it is something we have to accept.

    BTW – love that spiral clock – very Alice in Wonderland.

    Until 2011….

    • December 27, 2010 at 1:10 pm

      I like that you ask, “is that a good thing? Not sure, but it’s something we have to accept”. Here are my thoughts on that; there ARE still 9 to 5 jobs out there. If someone has taken the time to go to law school and get a JD, they can be very successful as a lawyer from 9 – 5. However, beyond the “professions”, the only other 9 – 5 jobs I can think of are ones where people either have to take a ton of risk (stocks, bonds, traders, etc) OR are at a lower salary level. It appears that to be a Director or higher, yes – we have to accept it; and for me, I had to find a way to embrace it.

      The spiral clock…you mean we’re not in alice in wonderland anymore? Dang it. Too much partying in college ( ;

      • December 27, 2010 at 1:20 pm

        “The spiral clock…you mean we’re not in alice in wonderland anymore? Dang it. Too much partying in college”

        Wish I could say the same, for me it was probably… not enough partying at college. LOL

      • December 31, 2010 at 1:50 pm

        Hi Jamie
        Thanks for your comment on my site.
        Have a great 2011 and I look forward to more of your super posts.

  3. December 27, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    I like how you manage to communicate your opinion effectively while keeping the content simple to understand for anyone regardless of his knowledge on the subject.

  4. January 8, 2011 at 2:35 am

    Nice site. I love the effort you put into your work.

  5. January 15, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Very nice post! I really enjoy the reading! I come here from the google while searching for some good article!Thanks

  6. January 18, 2011 at 6:14 am

    Awesome website you have by the way

  1. December 26, 2010 at 10:04 am
  2. January 8, 2011 at 11:12 am
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  4. January 20, 2011 at 7:45 am

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