The Most Important Question Before Taking Notes

Taking Notes

Why Are You Taking Notes? This seems like a simple question, and yet most people don’t consider it, they just grab their pad or notebook and head to the next meeting, or class. Some people find it’s the biggest deterrent to going paperless. There is a good reason for taking notes, but doing it incorrectly [...]

How to be More Productive by Lunchtime: 15 Tips

how to be more productive

What did you really accomplish last week? If you can’t remember doing anything that matters amid all the email and other busywork, it’s time to power up your productivity habits. Here’s list of 15 tips from my Empowered Productivity System to help you learn how to be more productive. Fight email overload Stop the onslaught. [...]

Improve Your Culture – Control Corporate Email

austin-american-statesman

Think a Ban on After-Hours Email is Crazy? Think Again. For years, I suggested to my clients that they consider having corporate policies for after hours email. Portable technology plus bad user habits contribute to an “always-on” environment that is bad for employees and bad for the businesses that employ them. My clients thought I [...]

Are You Wasting Time On This Task?

bad to do list

Time management is an outdated concept, and many of the traditional “tips” aren’t relevant for the 21st century. One typical piece of “time management” advice that is contrary to effective task management is to try to estimate on your to-do list how long each task will take. If you are using a logical and useful [...]

3 Tips to Getting Your New Year’s Resolutions Back on Track

The Secrets to Achieving Goals Now that the New Year is behind us, and the gym isn’t so crowded any more, it made me realize that a lot of people have a hard time achieving goals they’ve set for themselves. In order to make continual progress on your significant results, use these three techniques from [...]

A Systematic Approach to Productivity

System, noun: a harmonious arrangement or pattern; a group of related parts that move or work together; any formulated method of plan or procedure Atul Gawande, world-renowned surgeon, Harvard professor, and author of “The Checklist Manifesto,” says that there are three characteristics of a successful system: The data to determine success vs. failure. The ability [...]

3 Steps to Quickly Catching Up on Email After Vacation

“Conventional Wisdom” when it comes to vacations has two big problems: People skip vacation altogether with the rationalization that it would just mean working twice as hard before and after, so it’s not worth it. (43% of Americans don’t take all of their vacation time, and Americans get less paid vacation than workers in any [...]

Top 5 Gift Card Purchases for Improving Productivity

Did you get a Best Buy or other electronics store gift card as a gift? Below are six suggestions of office productivity tools that will boost your efficiency. Portable bluetooth speaker Use chore time to learn something! If you’re bored by cooking dinner, emptying the dishwasher, folding the laundry, or sweeping the floor, then just [...]

Two Ways to Tell if Facebook Deserves Your Attention

Kitten trying to get at a goldfish

I get asked a lot about social media, and if I think Facebook, for example, is a “waste of time.” They reference “kitten videos” or other such silliness.  I do use Facebook, and so I’ve paid attention to the interactions I’ve had on it lately, and analyzed them a bit.  Today, for example, I spent [...]

How to Make the Most of Your Holiday Weekend (Or Any Vacation)

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If you’re planning a vacation from work, here is a quick and easy suggestion for making the most of your time off.  It’s scandalous.  Blasphemous.  Heresy.  Your first thought will be, “I can’t possibly do that.”  Trust me.  You can, and if you do, you’ll realize what a real vacation is supposed to feel like. [...]