Organization – Avoid being reactive & stay focused

Alicia Kenworthy – Organization – What to do to avoid being reactive & focus on the right priorities.

Organization is kind of impossible in a startup to a certain extent. My co-Founder and I maintained to do lists, product management applications, so we use Asana and various other ones we’ve tried out. I think what you have to realize is you can never predict what‘s going to happen the next week and what your priorities are going to be. I think I heard an entrepreneur say once that if more than 10 percent of your week is scheduled, you’re in reactive mode, and you’re not able to really go after the opportunities that are coming to you.

So what I do is at the beginning of every week I sort of set my list of priorities. What I think needs to get done, what I’m planning on doing, but then I also leave time to really handle new opportunities that can happen. So if I happen to meet someone then I can have a great meeting with them, see where that goes, and I have time to do that. Or if I need to drop everything an recreate a pitch check, then I can do that as well.

I think it’s sort of impossible to really know where you’re going. You have to be able to let things go. I’ve had weeks where I had 50 things on my to do list. And I realized by the end of the week, the last 25 aren’t relevant anymore. So you have to be able to be okay with things being incomplete and really knowing what is priority. That’s the best advice I can give.