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I’m looking forward to sharing great ideas with you and helping you to grow.
As promised, here are five of my top ideas that you can use for instant results. These ideas will apply to most professionals and can lead to 2x better performance with 50% less effort.
Idea #1: Use Simple Emails to Make Your Professional Life Better
Your manager probably has no idea what you’re doing with your time.
They’re busy. They have their own problems.
Here’s the idea:
Send an email to your manager at the end of every single week outlining what you worked on this week, what you achieved this week, and what you will be working on next week. You can also include a list of blockers that they can help you with.
For your boss, this lets them know what you’ve been up to without having to ask. It saves them from wondering and worrying. They’ll appreciate it and probably come to rely on it.
For you, it makes sure that your performance and accomplishments are visible to your manager. Your superiors have their own jobs, are managing their own careers and are busy human beings. You should not assume that they’re spending all their time thinking about you and worrying about you and your career.
This takes it into your own hands, and keeps you front of mind. Career gold!
Here are four more emails you should be sending:
- Every week send a colleague an email to say thanks for something.
- Every fortnight send an email to someone you know (but not very well) and check in.
- Once a month an email to a potential mentor.
- Email a good friend and make plans every week.
With these you will be cementing your work relationships, building your connection to “weak ties” who are a primary source of future career opportunities, learning from experienced professionals, and keeping your important work friendships alive.
Regularly sending these emails can change your life. Try it.
Idea #2: Weaponize LinkedIn to Create a Perpetual Opportunity Machine
It’s time to start using LinkedIn wisely.
Most professionals (incorrectly) think that LinkedIn can’t help them. Truth is, they just aren’t using it effectively.
The trick is to make it as quick, easy and low friction as possible.
- Determine your career goal.
- Optimize your profile to reflect this goal.
- Add two new people in your role or industry every day.
- Reply to three posts with a positive and insightful comment every day.
- Post one thought, statistics or lesson every week.
Log into LinkedIn and repeat this process every day of every work week for a long period of time and you’ll start to notice good things happening in your career.
Idea #3: Automated Job Search and Salary Pulse
Many professionals let months pass by without pulsing the market.
Pulsing for what?
Opportunities and information.
Perfect jobs for you come and go and salaries increase, yet you have no idea. You miss good opportunities and your salary slips behind the market.
Don’t let this happen to you. Here’s how to automate job and salary discovery:
- Create a recurring appointment in your calendar to provide a reminder every month (for job search) and quarter (for salary check), you can just call it “Pulse”.
- Every time the reminder fires, simply head to the best job board for your career path (Indeed, LinkedIn Jobs, etc) and search for open roles in your field.
- Every few months, head over to Glassdoor, Levels.fyi or LinkedIn Salaries and collect data on current salaries being offered for people with your skills and experience.
You just might find your next great gig, worst case you’ll be loaded up with data to use in your next promotion or pay rise negotiation.
Pro tip: cultivate relationships with recruiters in your space and use the reminders to get in touch with them to discuss open roles and current salaries.
Idea #4: Build Your Own Internal Media Publication
Want to take 1 hour a week and use it to build a strong personal brand inside any big company? This is an unorthodox approach, but that’s why it works.
- You won’t be just a cog in a big machine.
- You’ll build your personal brand with executives.
- You’ll network without 'networking' or doing 'coffee meetings'
Sounds good to me. You're going to start a PRIVATE newsletter.
Most people start a public newsletter on Substack or Revue. The difference is that a private newsletter is invite only vs. begging the internet to subscribe and your goal is to sign-up only 20 high-value readers from inside your company, instead of 20,000 random subscribers.
- Choose a simple format that works for your industry. For example, you could do a weekly "1-2-3" of one photo, two thoughts and three links.
- Opt-in all your stakeholders and executive sponsors to start (you don’t need their permission for an internal newsletter). Anytime you meet someone in your company you really like, or is influential, tell them that you’re adding them to your private newsletter.
- Each week, collect and curate the content you need to populate your newsletter, put it together and send it out every Sunday. Sending it on Sunday means you’ll get in before everyone’s email inbox is clogged up.
This works because:
- It's easy.
- It scales.
- There is no obligation for your execs to read or reply.
If you are an interesting person then it will show, and they’ll notice you. Job done. The attention and respect of these readers is worth more than the 20,000 people on a public newsletter.
Your personal brand is assured, just rinse and repeat.
Idea #5: Create Time Like a Magician
They suck time right out of your work week. They get in the way of real work. They make sure you can’t get your work done and head home early to loved ones.
There’s a way to fix this (or significantly improve it).
The secret lies in the fact that you know exactly which meetings are going to be a waste of time.
So pull out your magic wand and start making time using these principles:
- Use empty placeholders to block your entire calendar every week. You can do this weeks or months in advance. This will make sure internal colleagues don’t just drop time into your calendar because they can see it’s free. You now control your time.
- Replace meetings with thoughtful emails. Before you organize a meeting, try an email first. If someone is asking for a meeting, ask them to send an email first.
- Insist on an agenda as a requirement for accepting any meeting.
- Review your calendar before the week and as a form of discipline cancel the 2 meetings you see as least productive.
- Cut short or drop off any meetings that aren’t productive.
Celebrate. You just created around 10 hours a week to work or play.
Look forward to being in touch with more ideas soon,