Phyllis Korkki, who reports on workplace issues for The New York Times, recently tag-teamed with Robert Pozen to challenge the notion that putting in more hours is a sign of productivity and value.
Pozen, a former attorney who’s a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a lecturer at Harvard Business School, is the author of Extreme Productivity: Boost Your Results, Reduce Your Hours (HarperCollins).
Among other benefits, Korkki offers that regular breaks not only reduce stress but also amp up creativity. In a second, related Times article, Pozen echoes what law firms have been hearing with increased frequency and sincerity from clients for at least a decade: Measure results, not hours.
He says there are three things most of us could do to significantly boost our efficiency: Run better meetings, read smarter and let go of our Inner Perfectionists as writers.
This last point reminded me of what my friend Mike O’Horo calls DemandTrigger — the business need that helps drive a sale. In my case, I might write for a living, but what I sell (i.e., my Demand Trigger) is time management.
As in, let me get that off your to-do list.
Because chances are good that every busy, high-earning lawyer or other executive has some writing chore on their desk that they keep putting off. It’s simply competing with too many other priorities for which the Cost of Doing Nothing (thanks again, Mike) is less than finishing or editing that article-practice group description-proposal or whatever.
But, hey, who’s counting?