Tim Ferriss on time management as priority management

This is a piece of advice from The Four Hour Work Week that I need to re-learn and re-apply on a regular basis: Slow down and remember this: Most things make no difference. Being busy is a form of laziness…

William Slim on operations and administration

To separate operational and administrative responsibility is to break a rule I have rarely seen violated without someone paying a heavy penalty. Viscount William Slim – Defeat Into Victory Full quote on the fall of Burma (Myanmar) to the Japanese…

Easier than maybe

“Always” and “never” are easier than “maybe”. “Maybe” requires a decision, introduces ambiguity. Most of our decisions start as “maybes” (hence the need for a decision). It can help to have a process for deciding, some criteria or a set…

The discipline death spiral

You make a bad decision (because everybody does).* You get busy fixing it – on top of all the other things you were already doing. You get tired and distracted. You start doing less of the right things, less well,…

Peter Drucker on balancing short and long term goals

If a manager does not take care of the next hundred days, there will be no next hundred years. Whatever the manager does should be sound in expediency as well as in basic long-range objective and principle. And where he…

Choices: how much?

Some questions to help you decide whether to buy something: How many cups of coffee is this worth? (If it’s less than five cups of coffee, it’s not a very big decision – you should probably go ahead. And don’t…

You snooze you lose

… is a fact of life. It means if you’re not alert, you’ll miss out. It doesn’t mean that it’s okay to snatch something out of someone’s hand just because they’re not looking, or that we shouldn’t set something aside…

Old year’s resolutions

What can you tick off already? Good work on those. What do you need to quit – stop doing, stop trying to do, draw a line under, declare an amnesty for yourself, admit that it won’t get done, and let…

The new possible

My sister (let’s call her Sharky) bought me a book for Christmas. Sharky lives in Argentina. She bought the book from a shop in the UK. I’m on holiday in a remote part of Indonesia. She bought the book, told…

Work: living in the middle

With types of work (work: generative; work: decisive) the virtue is in the mean.** One plants, births, grows, opens. The other prevents, kills, prunes, closes. And we have these gardens, between the wilderness and the desert. ** Aristotle