Saturday, December 29, 2007

First Half of January

I'm taking TWO WEEKS of vacation from my employer so that I can focus on a few things:

  1. I have managed to fall behind on some critical paperwork that needs to be addressed. I have to go through past records in order to be able to complete these tasks. Man, I sure wish I had that virtual assistant! I am terrible at doing administrative type of junk that bores the hell out of me. It isn't that I'm not capable, it's just that with so many other, more interesting things on my plate, I PROCRASTINATE on some of the important things that must be done in life. PAPERWORK - YUCK! This two weeks will give me some time to get these done. I'll follow the 4HWW principals of FOCUS to achieve these tasks as quickly as possible. With no business meetings, email, etc... then I should be able to sit down and knock one or two of these tasks out each day until they are done.
  2. My Project: The real intention of me takng this vacation is to work and focus on my project for which this blog is designed to report progress about. That's one of the reasons I had hoped to have more info from my Contract Manufacturer by now. I remain positive that he'll have me the info I need by early next week. I'm going to focus really hard on getting my business plan done. I will need help with this from people who are more experienced than myself, but I at least want to get a draft version of it together that I can take to some people I know with money and hope they think it's as great as I do so that I can get some initial investment money to cover some up-front costs.
  3. My Project: Prototype - I need to work on the web aspects (software design) of my little project. It need not be perfect, but I would like to have some raw functionality so that I can demo it when I present my business plan to potential investors. I tend to be a perfectionist with software development and will have to be very disciplined so that I don't get stuck on little tasks that take a lot of time with little value. This goes back to the 80/20 rule. In software development, you can get 80% of the work done in 20% of the time (or less). It's that final 20% that kicks everyone's ass. It's important, but not for purposes of developing a prototype. I'm not a graphic designer - so my prototype may look a bit rough in the begininning. I can outsource that aspect but my goal for the coming weeks is to have a semi-functional prototype that can be demo'd to the right people. Wish me success!


Brick said...

With respect to item (1), is this not actually the opportunity to try out a VA? What are you waiting for? At minimum, maybe you will have a VA job description as an outcome of completing this paperwork that you can use to get a quote for a VA immediately afterwards.

Great blog, I look forward to following your progress!

The Four Hour Trial said...

Hello Brick,

You know, I agree with you in many ways. I think that the type of tasks I need to complete would be nearly impossible for a VA to do without pretty significant involvement from me. However, it's probably just a control issue! :-)

Where I am right: I KNOW that I have to dig this paperwork up. That's half, if not 75%, of the battle. A VA cannot do this for me.

Where I am wrong: I could dig up the paperwork and let them sort through it, do the data entry and file all the forms. At what cost? I dunno! I do know it will be easy for me to send them a ton of stuff and let them figure out how to parse through it.

Brick...maybe you are right! It would be much easier to offload this particular task if I ALREADY had someone I trusted! But...I do have two weeks! If I spend my time getting the records gathered, interview the VA(s), go through the process and see how they complete it then I have a net-gain in that I can offload future tasks, which are sure to occur, to them. Ideally, it would prevent this very situation from happening again because I have someone staying on top of it for me. Can I put a price tag on this? Meaning, what is it worth to me to have someone do this. Probably. Brick - thank you! I think I'll follow your advice. In fact, I'll report back my progress and satisfaction levels upon completion.

Thank you for visiting my blog! It's nice to know that people are reading it! Sometimes we are blind to even the simplest of things and need some encouragement. You have provided that and I appreciate it.

With Respect - M