New e-book for Jamaican Professionals

kingston.gifMy first e-book is available for free for a limited time.

The title is “2Time Capturing – a Time Management Fundamental for Jamaican Professionals“.

While it is written for the Jamaican professional, it has wide applicability to all professionals. It’s just that I find the environment here in Kingston, in particular, to be so very challenging compared to what I remember of living in the U.S. Our professionals cannot easily use any of the static approaches that have been developed overseas, which led me to frustration with all the systems I could find, and got me on the road to creating the 2Time system.

So, my inspiration to develop this kinder, gentler approach came from my move from Fort Lauderdale to Kingston, and this e-book is tribute to the difference in culture I have found.

It is being offered for free for the next few days as a download from the following site.:

The public release will happen sometime on Monday, and then I guarantee that it will be available for free for only three days. Tel yuh frien’ dem!

Also, if anyone has any comments on the e-book, just click on the word Comments at the bottom of this post. I would love to hear from those who have downloaded it!

The Email Inbox as a Mouth

mouth-3d_model_anat_openmouth_web1.jpgThe email in-box is nothing more than a mouth.


Well, the mouth is an ideal capture point. It allows for temporary storage of a certain amount of food, and performs its function perfectly as a “staging area” for the process of digestion, and sending essential nutrition to the rest of the body.

When food stays too long in the mouth, trouble breaks out. The teeth, tongue, breath and gums all suffer when bits of food don’t make it out of the mouth. Clearly, it’s not intended to be a storage device.

In much the same way, the in-box was never intended to be a permanent storage area. It was only meant as a staging area, and when it gets abused, a user’s productivity instantly falls. If you have ever seen someone hunt through 4000 emails for a single piece of information (or if you have done it yourself), you know the frustration that comes from being buried by the result of having weak practices. Continue reading “The Email Inbox as a Mouth”

The Essentials of GTD

Note: GTD® refers to the book or approach called Getting Things Done developed by David Allen.

In an interesting post at Matthew Cornell’s blog, he makes the point that GTD is difficult to reduce to a lighter version, because it is packed so tightly. In other words, the system cannot be made lighter than it is, because of the bases it is designed to cover. I shared a comment that I thought that the focus needed to shift from trying to adopt a single person’s system, to instead empowering and teaching users to create their own systems. In this context, GTD is useful as a guide, but not as a new dogma.He responded, pointing me to an interesting post that he wrote on the topic of the essential habits of GTD. Here are the habits as outlined by Matt.

For each one, read “The habit of ____”:

Professional Un-productivity

20070227overload.jpgAs mentioned before, the task of comparing one worker to another in terms of their productivity has become much harder.

However, the results of examining their in-box can give a good insight into how productive they are. In other words, a person who has an in-box of thousands of items is less productive than one who maintains less than 10 at any time.

(If you are immediately offended by this assertion, then stay tuned…)

What is the reasoning behind this statement?

To put it simply, a “full” in-box is a sign of very low mastery of the 2Time fundamental components.

But, what is the problem with having 100 or 1000 or 10,000 email items in an in-box? Is it even a problem worth considering?

Yes, it’s a problem and here is why. Contained in that in-box is a combination of different time demands:

Inbox Difficulties

inbox1.gifBack in the old days it was easy.

The unproductive guy was the one who still had a bunch of bricks sitting in a pile waiting to be assembled into a wall, while the productive guy was finished long before, and was onto the next task of digging the trench.

Productivity was easily measured by throughput per hour, per day, or per week.

By contrast, one of my clients in the car insurance industry remarked to me the other day that his company has a backlog in the claims area. The company, in its attempts to increase productivity, had started to measure the number of cases disposed of per day by a claims processor. Unfortunately, this way of “measuring” the relative productivity of each person was running into problems. Continue reading “Inbox Difficulties”

Post-Pilot Analysis (3) – Awareness

istock_000002110160xsmall.jpgI noticed during the pilot that the higher belt levels of 2Time were describing systems that were increasingly effective at catching time demands, and preventing them from falling through the cracks.

In other words, they assisted the user in being fully aware of all the time demands he or she had on their hands.

Only when there is increased awareness can a user make powerful choices. The problem is that with a rapid increase in the flow of time demands, it becomes harder and harder to be fully aware of all of them.

The purpose of the higher skill levels is to help a user be aware of ALL the time demands, in a way that doesn’t produce stress. When I am aware of my time demands, there is a peace marked by the following example actions: