Many people seem to confuse productivity with efficiency.
Knowing the difference between the two can be the difference between reaching your goals and ending up spinning your wheels for months!
So, productivity versus efficiency, what’s the difference?
Productivity is how effective you are at completing a certain task. Efficiency on the other hand is how effective those tasks are at getting you to your objective.
Understanding this difference can help you achieve your goal.
The Analogy for Productivity Versus Efficiency
Imagine you’re driving a car.
In this analogy productivity would be your speed.
The faster you drive, the faster you’ll reach your destination. Just like how you’ll complete a certain task faster if you’re effective at that task.
Efficiency is about the direction.
In this example, high efficiency means you are taking the best route to get to your destination. Efficiency is doing the tasks that move the needle for your goals and responsibilities!
Just look at this:
Imagine you’re the driver of the white car.
And right now all you’re doing is going round and round on this roundabout at a dangerously high speed.
In our analogy, your productivity would be high.
However, if there is a destination you would like to drive to, then your efficiency would be a big fat 0! No matter how fast you drive, you’ll never get there while driving in circles!
This is why knowing the difference between efficiency and productivity is so important to understand!
Productivity without Efficiency is useless!
Many people seem to focus on increasing their productivity.
The problem is that people often focus on the wrong things. In other words, they’re great at the things that they do, but those things do not help them get closer to their goals.
I know many bloggers who spend a lot of time making small tweaks on their blog to make it look a little bit better, and they’re pretty good at it. In other words, their productivity is high when working on it.
However, their efficiency is close to 0!
After a certain point, small tweaks in the design do not contribute (much) to the goal of creating a successful blog! That time would be way better spent on writing and creating content instead.
At that point, it is the equivalent of driving around in circles on that roundabout.
While it may feel good because “I’m doing some hard work!”, it will just make it so you’ll end up spinning your wheels.
So, ask yourself this:
“What is my actual goal, and what tasks do I need to complete to get closer to those goals?”
Ask yourself if you are doing certain things that don’t really contribute to your goals? Even if you can do them quickly and effectively.
Figure that out and you’re well on your way to reaching your goals by increasing both your productivity and efficiency.
Efficiency Without Productivity Is Just Slightly Better
Now that you know how productivity and efficiency differ from each other, you’ll hopefully realize that you need both in order to reach your goals.
You can know all the steps it takes to reach a certain goal, but if you’re not productive, you won’t reach that goal in the time frame you would like.
Let’s take a dull example of bookkeeping.
If you’ve had accounting in high school or college, you will probably still remember how to do it properly. But, if you haven’t done so in a long time, it might take you 15 minutes for a simple journal entry.
In other words:
You’re being pretty efficient, since you’re doing the right task that lead to the completion of your bookkeeping. But because your productivity is so low, it will take you a long time!
You’ll get there eventually, but it could be so much faster!
Productivity Versus Efficiency Is the Wrong Way to Look at It!
It’s not an either/or kind of thing!
You need both in order to become a highly successful person.
It all starts with your efficiency!
The first thing you should do is to get crystal clear on what it is that you want to achieve. It could be a goal as simple as doing certain tasks at your job or as important as figuring out what you want to do with your life!
If you don’t know what you want in life, this training will help you get some clarity!
Once you know your goals:
Sit back for a moment.
Before you start rushing into any activity related to that goal, I want you to think about all the steps that you need to take in order to achieve the desired outcome.
Also think about the order.
In some cases, you may find that doing things in a different order than you’re used to can help you complete a certain task faster.
Alright, that’s the efficiency part.
Now is when you start thinking about productivity, not right at the start, which most people do! This is the time where you use productivity strategies and hacks to get things done faster.
One of my favorite ones is the 5×50 framework.
Get the free video training here to learn how you can increase your productivity by 30% within a week!
At the same time, you’ll become more efficient as well while reducing your stress instead of increasing it!
And that’s literally it!