OPINION

Do less to be more productive

In “Your organization sucks at innovating”, Shane Parrish discusses innovation (or lack thereof) within an organisation:

Want to kill innovation? Make people attend meetings all day. Send them emails every 30 seconds. Bombard them with too much work. Kill their enthusiasm. Make them write pages of pointless prose to justify something that should be simple.

What’s interesting to me is how closely this aligns with my feeling of unproductivity. I’ve been thinking about the “inverting the problem” (see above) by removing unproductive behaviors, rather than adding “productivity” as a layer on top of my existing workload.

To me, unproductive behaviors include:

  • Hour-long meetings to which I contribute roughly 5 minutes
  • Spending too much time mentoring / training, to the detriment of my own deliverables
  • Straying from my planned goals and tasks for the day (being too flexible)
  • Failing to adjust / reprioritize these planned tasks for unexpected but important changes (being too inflexible)

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