Productivity Hacking: Introduction

This is the introduction to a series on productivity1. The articles are based on content from a workshop I led at The Makers Summit.


Writing the words “productivity hacking” in the title of a blog post feels almost dirty to me. I’ve said before that the business of productivity is riddled with a huge amount quick-fix rubbish2:

That being said, this past weekend I led a productivity-focused workshop at a conference called The Makers Summit3. I titled the workshop “Productivity Hacking” because, despite the slight snake-oil taste I sense personally, I felt the term was a simple and accurate description of the workshop content.

I was astounded at the feedback that I received from workshop attendees. What I had envisioned as a quick fly-over of research and lessons-learned was described as “one of the most helpful talks I’ve ever been a part of” by several people in the audience.

I offered to share all of my resources with attendees and had planned to send a quick email to everyone, but the amount of feedback and questions I received made me re-think the value of how I share the content from the talk. I’ve decided to publish everything in a series of blog posts called, as might be expected, “Productivity Hacking.”

I’ve written about or planned to write about many of these productivity topics in my ongoing Making it Count Series4, but I think the specificity and format of the presentation warrants a new series, so here we are. (I’ll either continue the Making it Count series as a place for philosophical musings or let it ride off quietly into the sunset. Some of the previously-written content in those posts will be re-purposed for upcoming articles.)

I also plan to write about additional subjects that were brought up during the Q&A time that weren’t specifically covered in my presentation.

For ease of distribution (and because there will be multiple articles), I created a MailChimp list for The Makers Summit attendees who wanted the fully detailed resources from the workshop so that they can be notified of new content. You’re welcome to join the mailing list—simply sign up by clicking on the link at the end of the post.

Thank you again to all of The Makers Summit attendees for your feedback and encouragement—I hope these posts will be as meaningful as our time together in person.

You can receive updates from this series via email by signing up to this MailChimp list.

1. You can read the story behind this blog series and find links to all of the resources here.2. I called out ‘snake-oil’ productivity advice in the introduction to my Making it Count series.3. The Makers Summit is a marvelous conference. Learn more on their website.4. You can read about my Making it Count articles here.

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Practicing the art of bringing guns to a knife fight.

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