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21 Business Life Hacks

Ever get to the end of your day and think – if I only had 10 more minutes or if I could go back in time and start over I could get so much more done? Well here are 21 business life hacks, tips, tricks, and theories you can apply to your day to get just a little more done, increase your productivity and inject some wellness into your day.

One big disclaimer, don’t expect to use these all at once. Think about the areas you struggle to complete in your day and pick a few of these hacks to try. You might just be amazed on how simple these are to execute.

21. Setting goals – Define your purpose.

  • Create a plan of action and start working toward it immediately.
  • Look at your calendar and to-do’s ask yourself/other’s what must I do vs. what can I do tomorrow.
  • Be realistic and aware of other’s priorities and objectives.

20. Structuring your day – Ready set…go.

  • Start your day the night before, including Sundays!
  • Determine when you do your best thinking. Morning, afternoon or evening.
  • Schedule time to think, reflect and do.
  • End your day with the question, “What I am going to do tomorrow?”
  • Set aside 15 minutes to achieve massive productivity every day.
  • Ask others what they have going on and how you can help.

19. Think and do – Think accurately.

  • Work on the ability to separate facts from fiction and to use that knowledge to address your own concerns or problems.
  • Have personal initiative.
  • Do what you have to without being told.
  • While executing a task, pause and think, did I go the extra mile?

18. Two-minute rule – Follow the two-minute rule.

  • If a task comes on your plate that will take less than two minutes to complete, start to finish, just do it.
  • This keeps your list of “I’ll do it later” tasks from piling up.
  • Be careful about when you open yourself to new ideas and tasks. Otherwise, you’ll be interrupting your awesome rule to make time for those two-minute excursions.

17. Procrastination – Flip a coin.

  • Often, procrastination is a symptom of indecision—you don’t start on a project because you haven’t decided yet how you want to do it.
  • When faced with a choice you’re having trouble making, flip a coin. This forces you to decide in a few seconds what you could otherwise stall on for weeks. Put your head down and power through.
  • No daydreams and no rabbit trails. This is all about being productive. Work as furiously as you can on the task at hand.
  • Focus with everything you’ve got.

16. Time is money – Every second counts.

  • Start working the moment you walk through the door.
  • Divide your time equally.
  • Example: Devote it to three elements: selling, delivering and developing the business. If it’s not in balance, you’ll never get ahead.
  • Make that productive time holy.

15. Multi-tasking – Work smarter.

  • Use the command tab, multiple desktops, browsers tabs.
  • Listen to a pre-recorded webinar while working a non-time sensitive piece.

14. Staying focused – Eye on the prize.

  • Take breaks.
  • Concentrate your effort.
  • Don’t become distracted from the most important task you are currently facing.
  • Get a rhythm going, if you get stumped take a walk, talk to someone. MOVE!

13. Note taking – Ditch the legal pad.

  • Have a meeting? Bring your laptop/iPad.
  • If you type notes in real-time you can send them to the meeting owner right after the meeting ends.
  • Have to write notes? Buy a pocket moleskin, get’s you half way and forces you to only draft thoughts vs. a novel.

12. Using your calendar – Have multiple calendars.


  • Pull multiple calendars in one view, in one place.
  • Becomes your to-do list with deadlines.
  • Color code.
  • Think in 15, 30 minute or 1-hour increments.

11. Checking your work – Buddy system.

  • Use the buddy system, if someone else has not reviewed, stop and have them check.
  • If you think you checked it, check it again.
  • Use your tools! Spell check, LaunchList, Litmus.
  • Before you start your task, know the deadline and move it up to plan for QA.

10. Having the eye for design – What to look out for.

  • Consistency.
  • Spacing.
  • Colors.
  • Squint to see where the problems are.

9. Error testing on the fly – Right-click is your friend.

  • Use the inspect element to help determine what is being used, if it’s an image, what is the form, etc.
  • Litmus.
  • Check multiple browsers, phones, etc.

8. Your iPhone does more than take selfies – Don’t have time to scribe the whiteboard?

  • Take a picture of the whiteboard, your notes, or use video while the action is happening.
  • Use your phone recorder to record someone who is providing real-time information, feedback or content.

7. How to exert enthusiasm – Think positive and be positive.

  • A positive attitude sets you up for success and wins the respect of others.
  • Smile. Have fun.
  • Encourage yourself and others.

6. Taking breaks – How to reset the brain.

  • Take a walk or have a walk and talk meeting.
  • Take lunch, but instead of working through lunch — read blogs, news or  how to-do’s.
  • Keep a puzzle or industry book at your desk.
  • Work in a different location to get a new POV.
  • Bottom line: if you have not removed yourself from your desk in 90 minutes, get up!

5. Stand-up meetings – Meetings and their purpose.

  • Schedule stand-up meetings vs. booking a room.
  • Being on your feet keeps the blood flowing.
  • This also allows for more to engage in the conversation.
  • Keep the meeting on target and don’t drag on.

4. Kill clutter – Using your desk and desktop as workspace.


  • Stay digital.
  • Only have papers out that you are working on.
  • Use your digital desktop as a way to work on files locally.
  • Archive when complete.

3. Scheduling meetings – Accept, Maybe, Decline.

  • Always include a purpose or agenda for all future meetings. That’s internally and externally.
  • Include materials and send in advance so people can come prepared.
  • Schedule everything as soon as you can. Don’t wait!
  • Use the location field for meeting room, if it’s a WebEx or who is calling who.
  • Invite people who are essential and mark attendees as maybe so they know the meeting is occurring but they are not required.
  • Schedule shorter meetings.
  • Be respectful. If you see the person’s day is tight and they only have a small block, ask if it is ok before taking it. Start and end on time.

2. Getting the most out of your hardware – Keep it clean.

  • Set your updates for night.
  • Do them!
  • Don’t install/run programs you don’t need or use.
  • Defrag your hard drive.

1. Be heavy – Make an impact.


  • Indulge your imagination.
  • Dare to think beyond what’s already been done.
  • Believe in yourself and your purpose so fully that you act with complete confidence.

What are your best tips for achieving maximum productivity at work? Leave a comment or send us a tweet @getsmartacre.