Managing Meeting Madness.

How many times have you been one of the people below in a meeting; daydreaming, complaining, or missing it altogether because you were so sure that it was a waste of time? 

Doing it all.

Rachel Eakley's a busy girl. As a trained chef, psychology grad student, blogger, dog owner, and girlfriend to David Karp, the founder & CEO of Tumblr, she's got a lot to juggle. 

She shared how she manages her days here:

Holy Mobile!

Do you spend 2.7 hours a day using your mobile phone?

Is that time well spent, or are you mindlessly staring into the Facebook abyss?

What would you do with that time if you weren't on the phone?

Were you more productive or less productive before the age of cell phones? 

If you're not sure how much time you devote to your cell on a regular basis, try keeping track for a week, and then ask yourself these questions.

Maybe it's time to scale back some of this phone stuff. 

At least, that's what I wondered to myself as a girl ran into me on the street last night while walk-texting...

The Science of Productivity.

Gregory Ciotti created this great video based on his scientific research about productivity

Here are the bullet points:  

1. Get Started. Studies indicate that getting started is the biggest barrier to productivity. However, once we've begun a project, we're compelled to finish it. This is called The Zeigarnic Effect - when we don't finish a task, we experience discomfort and intrusive thoughts about it. 

2. Focus deliberately. Work in "packets of energy" (recommended: 90 minutes) and then take a break (recommended: 20 minutes). Don't rely on willpower to work, rely on habit and disciplined scheduling. 

3. Create an accountability schedule. Write down what you intend to complete in your 90 minute work session before you start, so that you clearly understand what your goals are. For example: "9:00am - 10:30am: answer and file all necessary emails, then shut down email program until late afternoon to complete other work." Which leads us to...

4. Stop multi-tasking. Studies show that multi-taskers are much less productive than those who focus on one job at a time and work until that one job is completed. 

Don't be this guy! ---->

Productivity Hacks

Fast Company's Erin Schulte asked some highly successful people for their secrets to being productive, and here's what they had to share:

2 days a year.

The average person spends two days a year on hold! One of the things that Fancy Hands does best is handle all of those calls to customer service (should be called disservice, really). 

Here's a year-end wrap up infographic about how Fancy Hands assistants helped our clients this year. If you're not one of our clients yet, imagine the possibilities...

No more listening to bad hold music while you feel your life slipping away from you. Ever.


Are you making New Year's Resolutions?

Only 19% of us will succeed in keeping them!

Click to enlarge.  


We all know how to Google...but do you Google like the pros? NOW you do! Click to enlarge.


In honor of 12/12/12, the last repeating date we'll ever see, here are

12 tips for time management:  

Time wasters.

We really hope that you don't waste 36% of your time on annoying co-workers!

Now is the time.


Harvard Business School boldly suggests a 3-Day Rule

Can you imagine only letting your to-do list tasks stay active for 3 days before doing them or getting rid of them altogether? Considering some of our 2012 New Year's resolutions will be carried over to 2013's New Year's resolutions, maybe we should pay attention to this advice! 

"A to-do list is only useful if you cross things off as often as you add tasks on. If something’s been on your list for more than 3 days, do one of the following: 

-Do it immediately.

It may take you less time than you think.

-Schedule it.

Find a time slot on your calendar when you can get the task done. If it’s important enough to have on your list, then commit to doing it at a specific time and day.

-Let it die.

If you’re not willing to do something immediately or schedule it for later, you won’t ever do it. Accept that it’s not really a priority and take it off your list."


The Woody Allen School of Productivity: 
1. Change Slows You Down. 
2. Don't Look Back. 
3. Just Keep Swinging. 
4. Have a Life. 
5. Watch Your Margins. 
6. Keep Extra Cooks Out of the Kitchen. 
7. Don't Micro-manage. 
8. Fix it Quick. 

Six for Success.

Fast Company shared these 6 tips for daily productivity

A Matter of Time.

The bad news: time flies. The good news: you’re the pilot.

GTD with Fancy Hands.

Fancy Hands and GTD go together like David Allen and label makers. We're the perfect compliment to GTD implementations whether you follow the system religiously, or opt to use just some of its techniques.

In "Getting Things Done," David Allen talks about creating a "mind like water" by capturing everything you need to do in an Inbox, then going back and making sense of it later. When it's time to sort through your inbox, you figure out your "next actions," creating projects, delegating, scheduling, and (in some cases) actually getting things done.

In an ideal system, you have a collection of (next) actions that need to get done. Then you get into the zone, crank out email, make calls, and check things off your list. 

Even in the most ideal GTD solution, your list of actions invariably contains a lot of stuff that you need to do personally. But often, your list contains things that anyone can do. That's where Fancy Hands comes in. 

When scanning your actions, take an extra second and think: do I really need to do this, or does it just need to get done? When you find something that can be done by anyone (like "set a meeting with Jane," or "find pricing options for a new scanner"), send it to us and move it to your "Waiting list." 

We work really well with the standard GTD implementation, but this suggestion proactively includes Fancy Hands in the process. Fancy Hands can help ensure that you're getting the most done on your important tasks and not spinning your wheels over the little things.

Cool Conference Calling.

Crap. It’s time to host a conference call. There’s no way around it, you’re the leader of this topic and people are looking to you for leadership. 
Lead, dammit! 
If you’ve ever used those free conference call services, you know that something usually always goes wrong. And when you’re hosting, you have to make sure you’re on time and dial in that extra host code, because yeah, another set of numbers is just what you need in your life. Like that apron Aunt Betty sent you for your birthday. WTF?
Stay calm. You’re in luck. 
Fancy Hands can neutralize your conference call dramas. Check it: 
1. Go here. Once you’re signed in, it looks like this: 
All you have to do is enter your date, time, the emails of people that you want to invite, and your phone number. 
And when the time comes for the call…we call you. What! Cool, right?  
Your invited friends will receive an email with a dial-in number, and they can also choose the “call me” feature if they want to be a baller, shot caller like the original – who dat? 
Oh, dat’s rite – you. 
Conference call, complete. Congratulate yourself on your genius. And, um...
Throw that apron away. 
Learn more about how Fancy Hands can handle your conference calls and more here, and let us know how it goes on our Twitter. 

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