Here I gather together productivity resources for your perusal that I have personally found to be useful. Undoubtedly thought, there are many great resources beyond that and so to help the readers I have also given more comprehensive lists across a number of areas from to-do list and task management apps, to books to blogs. Some I have reviewed already and others I hope to get to soon. Let me know if I have missed any!
This is my app of choice for day to day task management in the workplace. It is a small, local app with advantages too numerous to mention, but to list a few – multiple levels of subtasks, shareable task lists, hotkeys for efficient use, various view, tree, calendar, gantt, Kanban etc., import and export options and generally this to-do app is very flexible to implement whatever system you find best for your needs. See the full review of Abstractspoon ToDoList.
For project management this is the tool of choice. Very quick and easy to sketch out project plans. Comprehensive functionality for all manner of project task management and viewing of that data, gantt charts, resource leveling, time sheets, resource configuration options, dependencies, critical paths analysis, burndown and many more.
From note taking to brainstorming IthoughtsHD is an invaluable productivity tool. It is an IOS app for mindmapping and it is excellent as per the full review of IThoughtsHD. Quick and fast to add items and manipulate the structure. Various formatting options are available and also invaluable is the pull down note pad for additional test entry. Comprehensive import/export options are also available with this tool, which brings me to…
This is the PC accompaniment to IthoughtsHD. As the name indicates it is a free tool and it offers lightweight mind mapping. It is possible to share the same mindmap via dropbox between IthoughtsHD and Freemind so for me a perfect combination.
“The Leader’s handbook”, Peter R. Scholtes
One of the best Leadership books I have read. For productivity and task management I quite like his systems approach using Gemba. This is essentially focusing on the core tasks that add value to the output/customer. The idea is that with good systems, consistently excellent results can be achieved is one that appeals to me. Some great guidelines are given around this topic and I have discussed it’s application to productivity further at “Productivity the Gemba way“.
“Getting Things Done”, David Allen
This is a starting point for many people wishing to get control of their workload and to organize it in reasonable and digestible way and generally be more productive. David presents his method by way of a flow diagram to illustrate how to get “Stuff” out of one’s mind and into lists which can then be used to tackle the tasks one by one in a logical way.
This methodology has influenced the way I work, although in my case I have integrated it with some other methods – see Macro to Micro Task Management.
The Seven Habits of Effective People
- Private victory, mastery of oneself and one’s approach to activities
- Public victory, how to best work with others for maximum benefit
If the principles are applied sincerely and in a disciplined way I believe it can certainly have a profound impact on one’s life.
In terms of productivity, several of the habits directly impact this. For example, putting first things first and beginning with the end in mind. Other ideas are also covered such as the “Time Matrix”, which looks like a version of Eisenhower’s matrix.
In summary I thought some good material but looking at things from the big picture perspective.
“29 Leadership Secrets from Jack Welch”, Robert Slater
What I like about the teachings here are the simplicity of things. My interest is certainly not in multi-national corporations but there are several simple concepts here that everyone can relate to such as,
- The necessity to adapt to change
- Facing reality
- Begin with a vision
- Find and implement best ideas
The book is quite short and easy to get through so well worth a look.
I hope you find these productivity resources useful as well as the extended lists on productivity apps. This page will be a work in progress for some time so stay tuned!