Are you wasting time on “thin activities”?

Apr 22, 2014 | By Mike Lyon

I wanted to piggyback one of my last posts. You know I’m a huge fan of social media. But, like any good thing, when used the wrong way—like, to excess—the value diminishes.

We have to ask ourselves, are we wasting time clicking “Like”, browsing pages on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter, and retweeting Tweets that someone else took the time to think about and write—yes, granted it’s only 140 characters, but sometimes it requires considerable thought to be meaningful AND concise. Does posting photos, comments, and updates in rapid-fire succession, give us a false sense of accomplishment.

Put it in perspective. What do you truly gain from these efforts? Are you getting referrals, closing deals, or cultivating leads? If not, you’re engaging in what I call “thin activities”—those that have no heft, no weight, no depth.

Compare your thin activities to the thicker ones, those that deliver valuable results: taking the time to write or respond to an email, picking up the phone and connecting with a prospect, following up with a prospect who may have fallen by the wayside.

Thin activities can present distractions. Thick activities will deliver results. They bring in business, which should be your priority.

Get started on the right path by evaluating how you spend your time on social media. What can you do better? What is “just for fun”? And don’t try to kid yourself into believing that a thin activity is actually worthwhile, because the only one who loses out is you. Sure, you may have garnered a lot of comments on a Facebook post, but where will they lead you? How much business did that action generate for you?

Here’s a valuable tool to help you analyze your online activity: RescueTime runs on your computer and monitors where you go and for how long. You can get a report of which applications you use and the websites you frequent. You can set goals and get a productivity score that will help you identify (and, preferably, shed) the superficial, thin activities and focus on the thick ones.


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