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Ready for Anything: 52 Productivity Principles for Getting Things Done Paperback – December 28, 2004
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All of these shortcomings have been fixed in this great new book. Allen's theories, practices and strategies are delivered in 2-5 page bite sized pieces which much better suit his writing style. Each of the 52 short chapters can be devoured in a few minutes and can be understood and internalized individually or in well organized clusters as fits you best.
In a perfect world I'd suggest skimming Allen's first book so that you get an over view of his "systems"; then read this book for a bunch of "I get it!" moments; and then back to "Getting Things Done" for a more careful read. In fact, that's what I'm going to do.
But even if you never read Allen's first book; this new one is well worth the time because it will force you to look at work, time, and all of the stuff that clutters your mind and life in entirely new ways.
Ready For Anything is a series of short inspirational essays on productivity. It has a strong self-help feel to it. If you've read GTD and aren't convinced that the system is worth implementing, maybe this book will sell it to you. For those who are already practicing the system, it doesn't offer a whole lot. Many essays are about the importance of having a system, or the importance of the weekly review, a key element of the system. Others are simply meanderings with no concrete purpose. There are quotes peppered in the margins throughout. While some are thought-provoking, they distracted me from the main text. I'd prefer to see them at the beginning or end of the essay.
If you haven't read Getting Things Done, absolutely read that first. If you need a little motivation to keep you on track, maybe Ready For Anything will help.
Readers who "got" Getting Things Done don't need my advice on this one...they've already bought it I'm sure.
David Allen is probably the smartest personal productivity coach in print. I would buy Getting Things Done for every employee in my organization, and I would have copies of this one lying around to remind people and elaborate on some of the finer points.
Oh and I would like to add one point. I believe there is one thing missing from Mr. Allen's algorithm. That is finishing. I think his plan is outstanding for getting unstuck: figure out the next action, and do it without hesitation. But I don't find any attention paid to how to decide how many actions are "enough" for a desired outcome of a project.
You can always find some next action, and founder in what software engineers like myself call "permanent beta" or "feature creep." Yet external constraints are best not relied on exclusively for these decisions. It's best to volunteer a ruthless focus on the essence of your project's deliverable, isn't it?
So I would like Mr. Allen to write his next book about finishing projects, if he is able to develop insights into that stage as strong as his insights into the process of the middle stages.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Written very poetically. More an overview of David Allen's philosophy than instruction about the technique. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Sheryl Ferguson
This book really ads on to the concepts of the GTD Method. I ordered this book, getting things done, and making it work all at the same time, and I found that each one was unique... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Brian Johnson
This is a good book if you have read Getting Things Done, and just need to be reminded of the key points. Read morePublished 14 months ago by DNBG
Sometimes I pick up a book because I like the title...that was the case today. Then as I started reading several of the productivity principles resonated with me...
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