Increasing Productivity at Work: A Modest Survey

Increasing Productivity at Work: A Modest Survey by Laura Stack #productivity

"Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning." —Benjamin Franklin, U.S. Founding Father. Someone once told me, "This world would be a nice place if it weren't for all the people." He meant it humorously, but the statement stuck with me because of the grain of truth at its core. While we tend to work best as parts of teams, we also get annoyed with people who get in our way or won't listen to us. It's so much easier to take charge and just lay down the law than to compromise, but for most of us, that's not an option. In a recent survey, I asked my newsletter readers, "If you were going to increase your productivity at work, what would need to happen?" Although some admitted they needed to improve their work skills, a full 8 … [Read more...]

Constant Improvement Through Feedback Loops

Constant Improvement Through Feedback Loops by Laura Stack #productivity

When he was 10, my son Johnny took guitar lessons. One week he taught himself to play the song Sweet Home Alabama, practicing it for hours. When Johnny showed off his new song, his music teacher said, "That's great! Here's how you can play it even better," and showed him how to do a riff. To our surprise, Johnny was resistant to learning it. Later, when I pressed him about it, he said, "None of my friends play the guitar, so they won't know if I'm doing a bad job. They think it's cool no matter what I play, so I don't need to work so hard to change it." Naturally, I gave him the "mom talk" about how personal improvement is also done for the sake of it, not just for other people; that you take pride in knowing you did your best; that you should always strive to get better; and besides, … [Read more...]