article “Inside the Psychology of Productivity”

Greg McKeown Featured on Inc.

Greg was featured on article by Leigh Buchanan titled “Inside the Psychology of Productivity”. You can read the full article by going here:

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, recommends extreme selectivity as a check on your desire to always be accommodating. McKeown likes to ask people to imagine they have no to-do list, no inbox, no schedule of appointments. “If you didn’t have any of that, and you could do one thing right now that would help get you to the next level of contribution, what would you do?” he asks. “Maybe all the stuff you’re doing should be questioned. Start from zero every day. What would be essential?” People require space and clarity to identify what matters, McKeown explains, and what matters should dictate what you say yes to. “You can say, ‘I would love to do that, but I am already doing this,’ ” he says. “And that is completely true and understandable, because you are.”

On the face of it, McKeown’s advice seems at odds with that of Adam Grant, the Wharton professor whose best-selling book Give and Take has made generosity a hot topic in corporate corridors. Grant argues that helping others with no expectation of return can increase energy and well-being and, consequently, productivity. But, like McKeown, Grant advocates selectivity: saying yes only in instances when distraction is minimal and the benefit to others outweighs the cost to self. McKeown calls this practice disciplined generosity.

Bottom line: Although it feels good to say yes, be disciplined about the time you give to others. Employees and partners need your help, but mostly they need you to concentrate on what matters.