Work Smart 2: Stop Wasting Time Getting Productive

If you're watching this video series, you're interested in new ways to be more productive—but when does your obsession with efficiency become a waste of time? In this week's episode of Work Smart 2, Bill Clark asks how you actually work smarter when you spend time learning new productivity tricks. I share my favorite tool for keeping yourself honest, and then asked author of productivity bible Getting Things Done David Allen for his thoughts.


Here is the Popplet mind map used in today's episode:

To print this mind map, click here (PDF file).

Special thanks to David Allen and Bill Clark for their appearance in this episode and to Popplet. You can download Popplet for the iPad.

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  • Connie Glover

    Good stuff, but a little creepy seeing David's unmade hotel room bed in the background!

  • Dick Davies

    Best thought - There are worse vices than productivity porn.

    At one point I was at a fast growing operation and thought we were over-learning. Years later, I realized most of the new technologies were adopted within 4 weeks. As St. Bumpersticker said, "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance."

  • Narayanan P.V.

    I have to agree with David Wells and Silvia Sanides. They have said what many people are hesitating to say -- shifting useful and user-friendly information to multimedia in the name of high-tech is an overreach. We can all argue endlessly the ability of human beings to adapt -- but that is more a have-to rather than want-to. For instance, in this particular case, my position is exactly that of David. Hope our feeble voices get amplified and heard and people don't move all and sundry to audio-visual media.

  • David Wells

    I'm still trying to figure out how I feel about video on the web. It's distracting to coworkers for me to play a video unless I use a headset which is a hassle. I like to catch up on the latest industry news through newsletters and various news websites but they seem to be moving a lot of stories (like this one) to a video format. With video then I often have to watch a commercial or listen to sections which aren't of interest to me to find the parts I need. With text, I can quickly scan for what I'm looking for and skip the rest. What made you decide to use a video in this particular piece rather than just a text article with some pictures? What impact do you think the transition of web content to video is having on productivity?

  • Silvia Sanides

    I totally agree with David Wells. I find videos counterproductive and a waste of time unless they contain information that's best communicated visually. (Most facts are visualized just fine by graphics, charts). In fact I was very interested in this productivity story, commenced to read and then stopped short at clicking on the video...figuring it would not be a good use of my time.
    Silvia Sanides