Monday, October 31st, 2016


I used to do lots of workshops on Productivity. There was always some book to read and method to follow. So I would teach it. Participants loved it and for some, it was helpful. It helped people in roles where quantity equalled being productive and where there was not overwhelming variety.

So–what I taught was not good for top executives. So I decided to learn rather than teach and I watched and interviewed the CEO’s I worked for and with.

Lessons For Personal Productivity for C-level Execs:

–Know yourself and tailor your approach to you own idiosyncrasies as a person

–Give up thinking about quantity. Go only for quality. Be ruthless about what is important to move the needle on the most important issue of the day and of the strategy for your business. Move this needle every day.

–Write down what you won’t, can’t, do if you want to do the above–move the right needle. Quit all guilt.

–You will never get IT done. Inhale this truth. Then keep going.

–Let the right things fall totally off your plate. Get used to feeling lousy about that

–Know your own rhythm for being productive. (My work in never as strong if I do it early. I need time pressure to do my best.) 

–Build in lying fallow in some way. You and your company need breathing space to produce in the long run and to create. Constant pressure with no in between time creates a kind of hopeless fatigue and kills the higher brain functions   
like judgment and intuition  (which you are paid well to use well).

–Sleep enough to be sure you are even tempered, engaged and not staggering through the day. Do not show off your stamina. Show off your health.

–Take small breaks. I used to shut my door between meetings and play a quick game of solitaire or Candy Crush or Farm Heroes. Took five minutes and switched of my internal hub-bug for a while.

Productivity sounds so fierce and industrial. Constantly conscious sounds rather New Age. So think ‘Awareness Accounting’.

–What am I doing right now?
–Does it matter to my larger picture? Can I make peace with it if I have to do it and do it right? 
–What one thing can I do to feel the relief of doing the right thing?
–How can I put my priorities into the larger perspective?
–How do I get off my own back for not getting IT done.
–How do I become the calm in the middle of my company’s chaos?


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