7 Beginner Investor Efficiency Mistakes And How to Overcome them

Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.

Peter Drucker

“This is not good use of my time”, I thought aloud, wading through the sea of unopened letters on my desk. The whirring sound of the shredder was increasing my growing frustration. I glanced at the long list of tasks to accomplish. I had only accomplished one task out of the many tasks for the day. I looked at my watch; it was time for my viewing appointment with the real estate broker. The phone rang just as I was about to leave the house…it was the agent. I apologised to him, I was running late and rushed out of the house before I lost another investment opportunity.

Have you ever had a hairy dog day like the kind I just described?  I am sure you have.

This is what you face constantly when you start out as a beginner investor; it is usually the need to balance your full time job, family life and the desire to become financially free.

The greatest challenge for many investors and entrepreneurs is not in knowing what to do, but in doing what they need to do efficiently and productively.

The 25 minute Question, that generated $25000

A true story of how Andrew Carnegie paid $25000 to Ivy Lee an efficiency expert should drive home the importance of efficiency. Mr Carnegie wanted to improve the productivity and efficiency of his staff in his factories, so he hired Mr Lee to solve the problem.

The techniques Mr Lee taught the steel baron and his staff produced outstanding results that Mr Carnegie paid $25000 for his services.

Now if a billionaire can pay 25k for a 25-minute advice on how to achieve more…How about you?

A few years ago after I made the decision to become a wealthy,

I found it an uphill task to get the most important tasks done in one day. It was as if I needed 26 hours out of 24 hours.

The process was a time of learning but I was able to identify common mistakes investors make when they set out to achieve their goals.

Mistake#1. Not writing down your goals and tasks

This is a common mistake in terms of achieving your goals. A goal is a dream with a time limit. If you cannot clearly write down your goals, you are likely to fail. I find that if I start the day without a clear objective of what I intend to achieve, I end up doing tasks that I should not be doing in the first instance.

Solution. Start everyday writing a list of tasks based on your goals and objectives, you should then prioritize your tasks for the day. Do your most important tasks first because they will have the greatest impact on accomplishing your major goals. You can use a journal or 3 by 5 index cards to keep track of your task for the day

Mistake#2.  Frequently checking your emails.

Email has changed the way we communicate, because you can get instant replies to questions or send memos quickly. On the other hand, I think emails have become very intrusive in our lives and you could spend the whole day checking emails and fail to accomplish your important goals for the day. You must avoid getting into the habit of responding to all your emails at every whim.

Solution. Set time daily to check your email emails. If you are using email for work, you could create a separate folder for emails from your superiors. As a good rule, you could just skim through the headlines of your emails routinely or just leave your checking your emails until the end of the day. Here is one thing I now do routinely…. I ignore most of my emails.Most people who need to get me know they can phone me if it is urgent.

Mistake#3. Multitasking

Mary Ellen Tribby says focus and concentration is an essential skill for entrepreneurs. I had an epiphany moment with her last year when she said, “Concentrating on 1 project with one dollar is better than 4 projects and zero income” I agree with her. It’s better to do one task at a time. The result of multitasking is never accomplishing your goals. Moreover, this is a major cause of failure and frustration for most beginner investors

Solution.You should focus your time and attention on doing your most important tasks daily. Resolve and promise yourself you must do the most important task first daily. Another way to avoid multitasking is to group tasks together; you can set out time to return your phone calls, and then create another time to reply your emails. When you group your tasks in this way, you will improve your efficiency.

Mistake#4. Not choosing a suitable work planner

Most entrepreneurs make the mistake of having a fixed work time like the typical 9 to 5. The truth is the days of 9 to 5 work is over and this applies to you as an investor. I am assuming you are probably working full time, so you need to put in extra hours to work your investing plan.  You see, not having your own plan sets you up for failure, because you will end up spending time doing other peoples’ work and not enough time on your own work.

Solution. Draw up a planner that incorporate your investing activities and suits your style of work. Your style of work should enhance how best you function…for example, I am an early riser and I enjoy the solitude of writing and working on my business in the morning hours, before everyone else wakes up. You may be a night owl, one that works best at night. The bottom line is to find your most productive hours and work on your business at those hours.

Mistake#5. Not planning your work

“Have you confirmed or phoned to see if he is there?  Is the first question my wife always ask me anytime it el her I have a meeting. This one question has saved me from wasted trips and unnecessary distraction from my daily tasks. I find that most investors make the mistake of not planning and confirming appointments ahead of time. The result is you could end up wasting time going to meeting that are unnecessary in the first instance.

Solution: I would suggest you do two things to overcome this problem , write your confirmed appointments in pen and then use pencil to write in those appointments you are not sure will happen

You can accomplish more of your major goals daily. The key is to write down, prioritize your goals, and then create tasks based on your goals for each day. Limit the use of emails to important communications. Avoid multitasking, as it takes longer to accomplish projects and choose a suitable work planner. Finally focus and concentrate on doing your most important tasks one-step at a time daily

Mistake#6. Procrastination

Brian Tracy in his book Eat that frog identifies procrastination as one of the causes of failure in goal setting. This does not come as a surprise because most of us tend to put off difficult decisions until it gets to crisis point. In addition, taking decision at crisis point is a recipe for poor decision and outcomes. You should avoid this

Solution. When you have an important decision that will affect your long time goals, the best thing is to take a decision immediately to do something about the issue. Taking a decision is better than no decision at all.

Mistake#7 Not tracking your progress

Another efficiency mistake for beginner investors, is not tracking the progress of their goals. Its very easy to set goals and not monitor your progress, or get feedback on your goals.

Solution. Keep a journal or task sheet to monitor how far you have achieved your objectives.

The critical step in achieving your wealth plan is not in setting goals but doing the least number of tasks in the shortest possible time to reach your destination. I urge you to take note of these mistakes and you can overcome them with the solutions I have discussed.

To your success.