Throughout my career, I’ve been praised for an ability to “get down to brass tacks” and get things done. I have a general aversion to meetings as I believe that most of them are unnecessary in business. Far too much time is spent in meetings that generate few if any results. For collaboration, meetings are invaluable. But I have been in countless meetings over the years where I and/or someone else in the meeting didn’t say a word. If a day rolls by when I have no meetings or phone calls and I can work and produce all day… I’m a happy boy.
I’ve read many books on various topics in business over the years. My primary motives are to increase my own and the organizations productivity and effectiveness, and I tend to gravitate to books that teach me more on those fronts. There are two that stand out the most, of those I’ve read thus far.Getting Things Done
My former business partner Jeremy referred me to this book several years ago. I think it may have even been before I joined the company. I seem to recall just telling him about all the different things going on in my life at the time, and he referred me to this book. David Allen describes lots of great principles and practices to increase your personal productivity. He even has a step-by-step guide! There are principles that you can use in your own work life, and share with others to leave the office knowing that your priorities are identified and clear.
So if you struggle with several different task lists and priorities, I would highly recommend this book. Once in a while, I still find myself in the place where I need to sit down and “start over” to some regards. And I continue to practice the policy of “if you can do it in 2 minutes or less, do it RIGHT NOW”. I found this book invaluable, and as I write this I think it’s time for me to pick it up and read it again!
I think I had this ability already. I read this book a couple years ago, and as I was reading it I found so many things that reminded me of how I think and function in business. It would appear that I already had developed the power of thin-slicing. My best synopsis of thin-slicing is the ability to quickly digest information and make so sound decisions on what the solutions are. Throughout my career, I have been in meetings where someone is describing a problem and I can quickly “see” the solution.
Malcolm Gladwell has written a few other books, and I’m a big fan of his! This book offers a way to develop this kind of ability. We’re all different, and of course this philosophy will work better for some than it will for others. But if you’d like to make better decisions quicker, I would suggest checking out Blink!
These two books have helped me so much in my career. What books and/or practices have helped you? Let me know!