Your Cell Phone, The New Swiss Army Knife?

September 27, 2007

icon for podpress  21 Century Digital Pocket Watch [2:17m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

A client of mine recently pointed out how strange it is that I don’t wear a wrist watch. I guess It is a little ironic, since I’m a personal productivity trainer. It just never occurred to me. You see, I’ve been using my cell phone as my primary time piece for years. Not that I have anything against watches, there lovely. I just don’t like wearing one.


The Cell Phone Has Become the Swiss Army Knife of the 21st Century!

It did, however, get me thinking about other underutilized uses of a cell phone. So here goes:

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D.I.Y. Charger Station

September 26, 2007


Several months back I came across this clever way to deal with the abundance of charger cords (cell, Bluetooth, PDA, etc). To date, I have not found a commercial “charger station” that meets all of my needs. So, I decided to make my own.

Here are the supplies I used to create my charger box:

A surge protector (the Belkin I already had)
A Snap-N-Store Collapsible DVD Storage Box
Bookplate Hardware
Crazy Glue
Xacto Knife

A few important notes if you are interested in building your own charger station. The reason I used such a large box was because I already had the surge protector on had (just measure to make sure whichever one you use will fit inside the box).

The hardest part was finding the “bookplates.” Apparently that’s the name for the hardware used to cover the front of the holes I cut out. Other than that, it was 4 simple steps:

1. Trace bookplates on the inside of box (It was easier working with the box unsnapped)
2. Cut out holes for book plate with a sharp xacto knife
3. Put the box together and super glue bookplate hardware to the front of the box to cover the holes
4. Add your stuff and charge away!

I bought the box from and the “bookplates” from Here.

This video illustrates another way to create your charger station with supplies from Ikea.

A Recipe for Getting More Done 3: Efficient File Systems

September 24, 2007

icon for podpress  A Recipe for Getting More Done 3: File Systems [13:07m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download


On average, Inefficiencies rob 20% of our day.

The four ingredients taught in this series are designed to help get that 20% back!

Ingredient number 2: file systems, is a great way to start getting some of that 20% back.Office workers spend about 2 hours per day looking for stuff.

It’s not that the “stuff” is always lost. That’s just the time it takes to retrieve the information we’re looking for.My goal has always been to halve the amount of time required to retrieve information – thereby saving about an hour per day!

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6 Tips For Getting Through Email Fast

September 16, 2007

icon for podpress  6 Tips For Getting Through Email Fast: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

1. Limit the number of times you “do” email. Create a processing schedule and stick to it. Two or three times per day is sufficient for most people. Trying to reactively pick off messages as they arrive is a surefire way to waste time.

Instead, take a more proactive approach by only “doing” email during a few predetermined times each day. Keeping your email application closed when not in use is another great way to help break the habit of checking too often.

2. Be an email “processor”, rather than an email “checker!” What’s the difference? Checkers constantly interrupt themselves, looking for what’s new or interesting. This wastes time because email checkers tend to save most of their messages for latter. These “checked-but-left” messages have to be reread again, and again, and just when you thought I couldn’t get another, “again” in there … again.

Here’s a good rule of thumb: Only open your inbox when you’re ready to process each message. So what’s processing? Processing is reading each message with the goal of identifying what your going to do with it (file it, respond, trash it, etc.) and then moving it right away. Read more

Why Meetings in the Hall are a Bad Idea.

September 11, 2007

icon for podpress  Why Meetings in the Hall are a Bad Idea. [2:39m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download


The hall is a poor choice for impromptu meetings because neither party is prepared to capture important information.

Have you ever noticed how much work we try to get done, “by the way?”

Has this ever happened to you? You’ve had way too much coffee and your bladder is about to explode. On your way to the facilities, you bump into “Colleague Bob”.

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