Two Questions to Greater Productivity
This week in The Writer’s Life, we're on the topic of getting clarity. It's one of the most important things you need to achieve the success you want in your business (remember, you're in business first, then you're a freelance writer!) and in your life.
Clarity is all about asking the right questions. Figuring out the important things you need to know before you do anything.
Last time, I told you about three critical questions I ask attendees of my new training webinar so they can get clear in terms of what they want to get out of the webinar. (Did you sign up and watch it? It's available for free to AWAI members here … )
Today, I want to talk a bit about getting clarity in another area. It's just as important as anything else, but like those other questions, rarely addressed by entrepreneurs.
Getting Clarity on the Things You Do
Today, we're going to talk a little about getting clarity in your projects – whether they're client projects or projects you take on for your own business.
They don't even have to be major projects. Anything you do that requires more than a couple of steps, you should be looking to get clarity on.
Now, where getting clear on a project is concerned, there are two questions you should be asking yourself.
The first is, “What does done look like?” That’s the big overarching question.
The second one is, “What does doing look like?”
In other words, when it’s complete, what will it look like? And what are all the steps involved in getting it done?
Let's look at these questions separately.
Are You Done Yet?
So how do you determine what “done” looks like?
By asking a series of related questions like …
- If this project was incredibly successful, how would it turn out?
- If it was everything I wanted it to be, how would I know?
- If this was a smashing success, how would it end up?
Now, only after you understand that, the next step is to figure out what “doing” looks like. To do this, you need to really start listing all the steps that will get you to “done.”
What I like to do to when I determine what “doing” looks like is brainstorm all the steps I think I'll need to take.
I don’t try to do it in a linear fashion – first step, second step, etc. If I do that, I tend to box myself in too quickly. So what I try to do is just brainstorm all the steps first.
Then as I’ve kind of exhausted all the steps, I put them in order. As I do that, I can see if I've forgotten certain things. Then I can go back and fill in the blanks.
Once I get all that down, I’m able to create a step-by-step plan that will lead me to the outcome that I’ve already defined by determining what amazing success would look like.
An Even More Important Area Where You Need Clarity
You've probably figured out by now that I believe clarity is one of the most important factors to anyone's success.
And it doesn't only have to be about your business. It doesn't matter if you're a business owner or you work behind a desk 9 to 5 … whether you're a student or a professional in the workforce … whether you're an artist, bus driver, plumber, or college professor …
Clarity will help you do better in everything you do. And probably the most important clarity you can get is about you. Clarity about who you are, what you’re all about, what it is you want, and what you need to get it.
How much of that clarity do you have?
You see, the greater clarity you have about these things, the easier it is for you to be authentic in your projects and your dealings with clients.
Think about it – how can you possibly be authentic if you’re not clear on who you are?
You can’t be.
And that's important. Because if you’re going to do any type of marketing that ultimately requires you to get your prospects to make some kind of shift, authenticity on your part helps make that a lot easier.
So that's where we're headed in your next issue. I'm just going to get into your head a little.
Until then … let me know how you’re doing with determining what’s “done” and what the “doing” looks like with your freelance business in the comments below.
Don't forget about my training webinar “Frustration to Freedom.” It's available to all AWAI members here. And it's absolutely free. It shows you the three strategic pillars that are fundamental to all business success. Your only investment will be a well-spent couple of hours to watch it. It'll give you a major new outlook on your own freelance business.
Just click here now and pick a date that's convenient for you to view it.
The Professional Writers’ Alliance
At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »