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Welcome to Episode 38 of ProdPod, the podcast of productivity lessons in two minutes or less. This is the first episode in a four-part ProdPod series on outsourcing your personal tasks in life. Enjoy!
For many of us, we feel overwhelmed not by the many things we are doing on a daily basis but by the many things we want to be doing additionally or instead of what we’re already doing everyday. Furthermore, we find ourselves responding more often to communication than actively doing what we’ve planned. Think of Dr. Stephen Covey’s thoughts on doing more “important, not urgent” activities than the other three quadrants of “not important, not urgent,” “not important, urgent,” and “important, urgent” distractions. If you don’t know what the Merill/Covey Matrix looks like, head over to Google Images or Wikipedia and search for it to see how this long-term goals planning tool works.
Well, if you are struggling with these distractions (which many times still need to be managed or handled in some way, shape or form) I think there’s an answer for you. There’s a burgeoning industry in the area of personal outsourcing; the IT sector has seen the greatest growth and media exposure in outsourcing generally but this is even more defined. Administrative, professional and executive secretaries, assistants and concierges (some with very specialized skills) are jumping on the entrepreneurial bandwagon and are helping everyday people at reasonable prices to get the laborious, time-consuming and mundane tasks of life done.
Now, while there’s plenty of discussion about virtual assistants on the Web today, the fact is that you probably need a variety of people to do more specialized outsourcing in your personal life. That is, everyone who can afford it should hire at least a virtual assistant, then possibly a personal concierge and a daily money manager for more specialty tasks. In the next episode I’ll explain what each of those roles are and how you can utilize them.