Keeping It Old School: Five Ways To Boost Action And Productivity
Posted by: Mason Zimbler
Date added: Thu 12 May 2011
At Mason Zimbler we’re proud to be a 21st century agency with a progressive outlook, a young but experienced team and an understanding of the power of digital technology. Our clients are in tech, so we like to live and breathe it too.
So there’s an inevitably high gadget count in the agency together with a suite of digital tools to manage work flow, capture ideas and aid productivity. But sometimes organisations can get so wrapped up in digital tools and systems we kid ourselves we’re getting stuff done, when actually we’re not.
In our own drive for greater productivity and results, we’re looking at injecting some “old school” thinking into our company working practices. Here are five areas we’re looking at that also might work in your organisation:
- The To-Do List. When it comes to the to-do list there are stacks of apps and tools out there to capture your daily action points. But analogue has the edge over digital here: there’s nothing better than a hard copy to-do list for crossing through tasks with such satisfaction. What’s more it’s visible and it doesn’t need booting up.
- Idea Capturing. The best-idea capturing device for meetings, trains and ‘planes? The humble but trusty Notepad & Pen. Ultra portable and always turned on, they’re vital for those night-time "can't sleep moments" where ideas are spinning round your head. As David Allen - the Getting Things Done Guy - said, your mind is for having ideas not holding them, so scribble them down on a pad.
- Implementation. Sure, good planning is crucial and the MZ planning department lies at the heart of the agency for crafting campaigns and client activity. But when it comes to putting your ideas into action I advocate execution over excessive planning. After all any organisation can plan and schedule their intentions all day long, but nothing’s more effective than just doing it!
- The Face To Face. Whilst I agree an excessive meetings culture is never recommended, the good old fashioned face-to-face can be so much more effective for important or rapid communication. Every so often, rather than an email or a phone call, invest in some face time.
- Getting Unplugged. We all spend so much time in front of screens it’s important to switch off to get creative and productive. So if you’re looking for killer ideas, take a step away from the work station. At our agency the coffee shop and our local members’ club are becoming extensions of our own office environment to help incubate better ideas.
So if you’re looking to increase productivity and get your team focused on action try going back to basics. Instead of kitting out everyone in your organisation with an iPad, buy them a notepad. After all, it’s cheaper, it doesn’t need wifi and you can’t check facebook on it...
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