Many people confuse effectiveness with effort, while there is a vast difference between the two, for example: someone might drive a car with high efficiency, but if the he was going the wrong way, then his work would not be effective. And if the airplane flying from London to Moscow deviated one degree off course, it would eventually land in Cairo.
And the one who is always busy may not be effective, as he might be busy doing little things that do not add much to his mission in life, while keeping him occupied from doing the important matters, so the famous rule “I am busy, so I am effective” is not right.
The foundations of effectiveness are the essence before the appearance and the balance between the productivity and the ability to produce.
First: Essence before Appearance:
The purity of essence means that you are a valuable person building your life on the basis of established values like justice, tolerance, honesty and straightforwardness, as with such values you became great in essence and will use that essence in the good, and then become a true effective personality.
The real greatness lies in the greatness within, in your values and principles that colors your entire life, and not – as some might think- in the certificates you own or skills you acquire, as the effectiveness with all its importance comes from within, in your uniformity with yourself, your values and your principles, and many are mistaken when they concentrate on skill acquisition and possession of certificates, and forget about values and principles.
And some would demote skills or belittle certificates, and this is not right, as no one can omit the importance of these means to the development of the nation and the creation of life, but it is like the body, that is worth nothing without the soul, and the soul is that essence inside you.
To explain the difference between the appearance and the essence, picture someone possessing communication skills, and enrolled in tens of seminars about effective convincing and listening, building relations, interesting talk and many others skills. This person is supposed to be an expert in the human relations and influencing others, but that is only the appearance. And if we added the appearance to the essence, the result will sure be effectiveness.
Second: The Balance between productivity and the ability to produce:
Some might consider effectiveness in the form of “The more you produce the more effective you are”, when the truth is that effectiveness is made of two main parts: Productivity or the product, and the source of productivity or ability to produce.
So it is a scale, on the right hand you have productivity and on the left hand you have ability to produce. And if you outweighed and concentrated on productivity, you should expect a dropped health, worn out nerves, sever life pressures, less time with family, lost kids and a long chain of repeated failures and frustrations.
On the other hand, if you outweighed the ability to produce and concentrated on that, then you are like someone who discovered the importance of sports and started practicing it for 10 times a day, while neglecting work and productivity.
Steven Covey says: “effectiveness lies in the balance and the excessive focus on production results in health deterioration, worn out of machinery, bank account drainage and broken relations. And excessive in dealing with the ability to produce is like someone who runs for 3 or 3 hours a day, vain of the ten years he will add to his life, not aware that is wasting it in running”