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The Time Bandit Solution: Recovering Stolen Time You Never Knew You Had Hardcover – September 2, 2014
''A few weeks after training, we solicited feedback from employees about their experience and results. One of the most critical things they reported was that with implementation of these techniques they were gaining back an average of about 6 hours and 15 minutes per week per employee. That's fantastic!'' --First Financial PARTNERS
''Client service survey results have improved because we can provide more undivided attention to clients to take care of their needs.'' --Bank of Oklahoma
About the Author
Ed Brown had no time to write this book, which is exactly why he wrote it. Bronx born and bred, Ed co-founded the #1 firm in culture change management consulting and training for the financial services industry, Cohen Brown Management Group, now in 50 countries and 12 languages. Its past and present clients include companies such as Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Royal Bank of Canada, CIBC, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Citibank, Barclays, Prudential Life, and Merrill Lynch. He has personally authored and delivered many of Cohen Brown s programs. In his early career, Ed created and owned one of the largest business management firms in the U.S. for musicians, entertainers, and professionals. He was also a major record producer, a producer of two television specials, and a songwriter, publishing and producing a record of the Year. He shepherded Don Ho to become Hawaii's all-time greatest performer, with whom he also owned prestigious restaurants and night clubs. Ed has been a founder of banks and a real estate developer, among many other remarkable endeavors. Ed lives in Malibu with his wife Shari.
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Top customer reviews
However, once Brown did get to the point, wow, there was a whole lot of good advice to love. The gist of this book is simple: you don't get anything done if you are interrupted all the time. So you have to find a way to convince your most common Time Bandits (usually your boss[es], coworkers, clients, spouse, children, etc.) to allow you to have uninterrupted stretches of time to concentrate on whatever task you need to get done. And since that is a seemingly impossible task, Brown spends most of the book giving advice, guidance, and scripts for how to go about the convincing your Time Bandits that mutual uninterrupted time will be mutually beneficial.
So most of this book, ultimately, is about how to sell; in this case, you are selling an idea to someone who may be reluctant to agree with you. And Brown clearly knows how to sell. His advice is really good. I actually felt like I learned a lot from this book about how to interact with people more effectively, as well as how to structure my day most efficiently. Here are some of my favorite pieces of advice:
***If someone objects to what you're selling, rejoice! You are on your way to closing the deal, because the person is actually opening herself up to being convinced or persuaded.
***All objections to any sale belong to one of four categories:
1) No Need--I'm already too busy or We already have a good plan in place.
2) Distrust--How do I know you aren't just taking advantage of me?
3) Inconvenience--This isn't a good thing to discuss at this time.
4) I don't understand--How does this all work?
***Don't do things "as they come up." Match your most difficult and energy-consuming tasks to your peak energy levels during the day.
***Make sure to do homogenous and repetitive tasks (like email or phone calls) at the same time, all at once.
I also really appreciated Brown's "psychotherapeutic techniques" for developing resilience and keeping a positive attitude.
It isn't the easiest thing to convince your Time Bandits that uninterrupted quiet times are beneficial for everyone--especially in my case; my Bandits are three very young children. But I did learn why having uninterrupted time to complete a task is so very important. And that, in turn, helped me have some insight into why I've been so frustrated doing bits and pieces of twenty different tasks at the same time. (Welcome to parenthood.)
Ultimately, I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a bit dense at parts, but, overall, I thought Brown was incredibly insightful and gave very practical advice.
To counteract these nasty time-wasters, schedule blocks of time that you can work undisturbed. Mr. Brown calls this "Time Locking." Educate your clients and your colleagues, so that they will understand, and not be offended.
It's also important to schedule "Quiet Time." In Hawaii, the author began to understand the importance of this time for reflection: "I embraced my need for Quiet Time as a poet embraces a muse."
This book is a lot like an autobiography. The author has lots of stories about his clients, and how he managed their businesses. "So, I my 30's, I simply said to my LA life, 'Enough! I disolved all my partnerships, sold off my assets, said goodbye to my clients - movie stars, athletes, singers, and all." We then hear about the author's encounter with the famous Don Ho, and see the photo of the nicely bronzed author (or is that Don Ho?)
The tone of the book is too much about the author and his successes, and too little about solving the reader's problems. Honestly, who cares about the author's success with Don Ho, or with Roy Rogers? The author strikes me as a nice man, but his personal stories seem oftentimes intrusive.
Besides the time-locking idea, one should embrace an emotional tool-kit, which the author calls, "Focal Locking Martial Arts," with special emphasis on positive affirmation. This is part of a mental hygiene process. For example, Mr. Brown relates a scuba diving incident, in which he was forced to stay in a decompression chamber to prevent the "bends." He relied upon his emotional toolkit to help him cope with that situation.
There are many decent ideas in this book, but you have to wade through a lot of text to get to the essence of the material. As interesting as the stories are, I really wished the principles were more concisely (and more briefly) stated.
√ All in all, an "okay" book, with decent ideas. Ironically, I found it too time-consuming to get to the core message of a book on saving time.
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I thought the book was a bit slow starting...Read more