10 episodes

Productivity Book Group
Productivity Book Group is a virtual, personal productivity book discussion club and podcast. All are invited to read and discuss these personal productivity and related books with us!
GENERAL INFORMATION
We meet once a quarter by Zoom (audio, video or domestic and international phone dial-in options). In between those quarterly discussions, we interview productivity authors and record book summaries/reviews of other productivity books.
If you use Google Calendar, it’s easy to keep up-to-date as you can subscribe by visiting http://goo.gl/ym3Vl and clicking on “+Google Calendar” icon on the lower-right corner of the Productivity Book Group calendar.
DISCUSSION
It’s easy! Read the book noted on the schedule and then join the teleconference call at the date/time in the calendar or as posted in http://productivitybookgroup.org/upcoming-books/.
Join us in our digital community for Productivity Book Group via http://productivitybookgroup.org/community and you can discuss any of the books we are reading in the events created for each reading selection!
SCHEDULE
Please visit our Upcoming Books page to see the next few reading selections and the dates of our live discussion calls. For prior book discussions, please visit our Episodes page for the archives of those calls. We welcome your questions, concerns, recommendations and suggestions! Thank you!
Here’s to your productive life,
Ray Sidney-Smith
Productivity Book Group

Productivity Book Grou‪p‬ Ray Sidney-Smith | rsidneysmith.com

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

Productivity Book Group
Productivity Book Group is a virtual, personal productivity book discussion club and podcast. All are invited to read and discuss these personal productivity and related books with us!
GENERAL INFORMATION
We meet once a quarter by Zoom (audio, video or domestic and international phone dial-in options). In between those quarterly discussions, we interview productivity authors and record book summaries/reviews of other productivity books.
If you use Google Calendar, it’s easy to keep up-to-date as you can subscribe by visiting http://goo.gl/ym3Vl and clicking on “+Google Calendar” icon on the lower-right corner of the Productivity Book Group calendar.
DISCUSSION
It’s easy! Read the book noted on the schedule and then join the teleconference call at the date/time in the calendar or as posted in http://productivitybookgroup.org/upcoming-books/.
Join us in our digital community for Productivity Book Group via http://productivitybookgroup.org/community and you can discuss any of the books we are reading in the events created for each reading selection!
SCHEDULE
Please visit our Upcoming Books page to see the next few reading selections and the dates of our live discussion calls. For prior book discussions, please visit our Episodes page for the archives of those calls. We welcome your questions, concerns, recommendations and suggestions! Thank you!
Here’s to your productive life,
Ray Sidney-Smith
Productivity Book Group

    Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown

    Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown

    For our final, live book discussion of 2020, Productivity Book Group [ https://productivitybookgroup.org ] discussed Greg McKeown’s Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less [ https://amzn.to/3co5Nu9 ]. Enjoy the discussion!







    About Greg McKeown (Amazon)







    Greg McKeown is the author of the New York Times Bestseller, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less (Crown Business, April 2014). He has taught at companies that include Apple, Google, Facebook, Salesforce.com, Symantec, Twitter and VMware. He was recently named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.He has conducted research in the field of leadership, strategy and why people and teams thrive and why they don’t. He is a blogger for Harvard Business Review and the Influencer Network on LinkedIn.He also collaborated on the writing and research of the Wall Street Journal bestseller “Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter” (Harper Business, June 2010), “Bringing Out the Best in Your People” (Harvard Business Review, May 2010).Prior to this research and teaching, Greg worked for Heidrick & Struggles’ Global Leadership Practice assessing senior executives. His work included being a part of a year long project for Mark Hurd (then CEO of Hewlett Packard) assessing the top 300 executives at HP.Greg is an active social innovator. He served as a Board Member for the Washington D.C. policy group, Resolve (KONY2012), and as a mentor with 2 Seeds a non-profit incubator for agricultural projects in Africa. And he has been a guest speaker at non-profit groups that have included The Kauffman Fellows, St. Jude and the Minnesota Community Education Association.Originally from London, England, he now lives in Silicon Valley, California with his wife and their four children. Greg holds an MBA from Stanford University.







    About the Book, Essentialism (Amazon)







    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • More than one million copies sold! Essentialism isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done.“A timely, essential read for anyone who feels overcommitted, overloaded, or overworked.”—Adam GrantHave you ever:• found yourself stretched too thin?• simultaneously felt overworked and underutilized?• felt busy but not productive?• felt like your time is constantly being hijacked by other people’s agendas?If you answered yes to any of these, the way out is the Way of the Essentialist.Essentialism is more than a time-management strategy or a productivity technique. It is a systematic discipline for discerning what is absolutely essential, then eliminating everything that is not, so we can make the highest possible contribution toward the things that really matter.By forcing us to apply more selective criteria for what is Essential, the disciplined pursuit of less empowers us to reclaim control of our own choices about where to spend our precious time and energy—instead of giving others the implicit permission to choose for us.Essentialism is not one more thing—it’s a whole new way of doing everything. It’s about doing less, but better, in every area of our lives. Essentialism is a movement whose time has come.











    This a talk McKeown gave at Google about Essentialism. Enjoy!

    • 58 min
    The New Corner Office: How the Most Successful People Work from Home by Laura Vanderkam – Productivity Book Group

    The New Corner Office: How the Most Successful People Work from Home by Laura Vanderkam – Productivity Book Group

    The New Corner Office: How the Most Successful People Work from Home [ https://amzn.to/3otqx9z ] by Laura Vanderkam.

    Dr. Frank Buck, the author of Get Organized! Time Management for School Leaders [ https://amzn.to/2V2H8RL ], and regular speaker on time management, joins me as usual to co-host this summary-review episode on Productivity Book Group.

    About the Author (from Amazon)



    Laura Vanderkam is the author of several time management and productivity books, including Off the Clock, I Know How She Does It, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, and 168 Hours.

    Her 2016 TED talk, “How to Gain Control of Your Free Time,” has been viewed more than 5 million times. She regularly appears in publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, and Fortune. She is the co-host, with Sarah Hart-Unger, of the podcast Best of Both Worlds.

    She lives outside Philadelphia with her husband and four children, and blogs at LauraVanderkam.com.



    About the Book (from the book cover)



    Drawing on her 18 years of experience working remotely, plus original interviews with managers, employees, and free agents who’ve perfected their remote routines, Laura Vanderkam shares strategies for productivity, creativity, and health in the new corner office.

    How do you do great work while sitting near the same spot where you watch Netflix? How can you be responsive without losing the focus necessary for getting things done? How can you maintain and grow your network when you spend less time face to face?

    The key is to detach yourself from old ways of working and adopt new habits to match your new environment. Long before public health concerns pushed many of us indoors, some of the most successful people fueled their careers with carefully perfected work-from-home routines. Drawing on those profiles and her own insights, productivity expert and mother of five Laura Vanderkam reveals how to turn “being cooped up” into the ultimate career advantage. Her hacks include:

    •  Manage by task, not time. Going to an office for 8 hours makes you feel like you’ve done something, even if you haven’t. Remote workers should set 3-5 ambitious goals for each day and consider the work day done when these are crossed off.•  Get the rhythm right. A well-planned day features time for focused work, interactive work, and rejuvenating breaks. In place of a commute, a consciously chosen shut down ritual keeps work from continuing all night.•  Nurture connections. Wise remote workers can build broader and more effective networks than people sitting in the same cubicle five days a week.

    Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, a self-starter or someone who prefers detailed directions, you can do your clearest thinking and deepest work at home–and have more energy left over to achieve personal goals or fuel bigger professional ambitions. In fact, soon you might find it hard to imagine working any other way.



    Our next reading selections



    Essentialism: The Disciplines Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeownDecember 16, 2020 at noon Eastern

    Show Notes/Quotations

    (Please listen to understand the context of the resources provided. If we missed something, please comment on the episode and let us know!)

    Please visit a href="http://productivitybookgroup.

    • 39 min
    The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan

    The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan

    Productivity Book Group [ http://productivitybookgroup.org ] discussed The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results [ https://amzn.to/3co5Nu9 ] by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan. Enjoy the discussion!







    About Gary Keller (Amazon)







    Professionally, Gary’s ONE Thing is teaching. He excelled as a real estate salesperson by teaching clients how to make great home buying-and-selling decisions. As a real estate sales manager, he recruited agents through training and helped them build their careers the same way. As cofounder and chairman of the board, he built Keller Williams Realty International from a single office in Austin, Texas, to the largest real estate franchising company in the United States by using his skills as teacher, trainer, and coach. Gary defines leadership as “teaching people how to think the way they need to think so they can do what they need to do when they need to do it, so they can get what they want when they want it.”An Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and finalist for Inc. Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year, Keller is recognized as one of the most influential leaders in the real estate industry. He has also helped many small business owners and entrepreneurs find success through three nationally bestselling books: The Millionaire Real Estate Agent, The Millionaire Real Estate Investor, and SHIFT: How Top Real Estate Agents Tackle Tough Times. A book, after all, is just another way to teach, but one with an infinitely large classroom. As a business coach and national trainer, Gary has helped countless others realize extraordinary results by narrowing focus to their own ONE Thing.Unsurprising to those who know him, Gary’s single greatest achievement is the life he’s built with his wife Mary and their son John.







    About the Book (Amazon)







    People are using this simple, powerful concept to focus on what matters most in their personal and work lives. Companies are helping their employees be more productive with study groups, training, and coaching. Sales teams are boosting sales. Churches are conducting classes and recommending for their members.By focusing their energy on one thing at a time people are living more rewarding lives by building their careers, strengthening their finances, losing weight and getting in shape, deepening their faith, and nurturing stronger marriages and personal relationships.YOU WANT LESS. You want fewer distractions and less on your plate. The daily barrage of e-mails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract you and stress you out. The simultaneous demands of work and family are taking a toll. And what’s the cost? Second-rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paychecks, fewer promotions–and lots of stress.AND YOU WANT MORE. You want more productivity from your work. More income for a better lifestyle. You want more satisfaction from life, and more time for yourself, your family, and your friends.NOW YOU CAN HAVE BOTH ― LESS AND MORE. In The ONE Thing, you’ll learn to * cut through the clutter * achieve better results in less time * build momentum toward your goal* dial down the stress * overcome that overwhelmed feeling * revive your energy * stay on track * master what matters to you The ONE Thing delivers extraordinary results in every area of your life–work, personal, family, and spiritual. WHAT’S YOUR ONE THING?







    Our next reading selections are:















    a href="https://amzn.

    • 55 min
    Upstream by Dan Heath – Book Review – Productivity Book Group

    Upstream by Dan Heath – Book Review – Productivity Book Group

    Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen [ https://amzn.to/3kh1iVx ] by Dan Heath.

    Dr. Frank Buck, the author of Get Organized! Time Management for School Leaders [ https://amzn.to/2V2H8RL ], and regular speaker on time management, joins me as usual to co-host this summary-review episode on Productivity Book Group.

    About the Author (from Amazon)



    Dan Heath is the co-author, along with his brother Chip, of four New York Times bestsellers: Made to Stick, Switch, Decisive, and The Power of Moments. The Heaths’ books have sold over 3 million copies worldwide and been translated into 33 languages.Heath’s fifth book, Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen, will be released on March 3, 2020. Heath is a Senior Fellow at Duke University’s CASE center, which supports entrepreneurs who are fighting for social good. A graduate of the University of Texas and Harvard Business School, he lives now in Durham, NC.



    About the Book (from the book cover)



    Wall Street Journal BestsellerNew York Times bestselling author Dan Heath explores how to prevent problems before they happen, drawing on insights from hundreds of interviews with unconventional problem solvers.So often in life, we get stuck in a cycle of response. We put out fires. We deal with emergencies. We stay downstream, handling one problem after another, but we never make our way upstream to fix the systems that caused the problems. Cops chase robbers, doctors treat patients with chronic illnesses, and call-center reps address customer complaints. But many crimes, chronic illnesses, and customer complaints are preventable. So why do our efforts skew so heavily toward reaction rather than prevention?Upstream probes the psychological forces that push us downstream—including “problem blindness,” which can leave us oblivious to serious problems in our midst. And Heath introduces us to the thinkers who have overcome these obstacles and scored massive victories by switching to an upstream mindset. One online travel website prevented twenty million customer service calls every year by making some simple tweaks to its booking system. A major urban school district cut its dropout rate in half after it figured out that it could predict which students would drop out—as early as the ninth grade. A European nation almost eliminated teenage alcohol and drug abuse by deliberately changing the nation’s culture. And one EMS system accelerated the emergency-response time of its ambulances by using data to predict where 911 calls would emerge—and forward-deploying its ambulances to stand by in those areas.Upstream delivers practical solutions for preventing problems rather than reacting to them. How many problems in our lives and in society are we tolerating simply because we’ve forgotten that we can fix them?



    Our next reading selections

    September 23, 2020

    The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan

    Show Notes/Quotations

    (Please listen to understand the context of the resources provided. If we missed something, please comment on the episode and let us know!)



    *

    Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen by Dan Heath 



    *

    Perceptual blindness



    *

    a href="https://amzn.

    • 47 min
    Mindset – Productivity Book Group

    Mindset – Productivity Book Group

    Productivity Book Group [ https://productivitybookgroup.org ] discussed Mindset: The New Psychology of Success [ https://amzn.to/306YW4o ] by Carol S. Dweck, PhD. Enjoy the discussion!

    About Carol Dweck (Amazon)

    Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading researchers in the fields of personality, social psychology, and developmental psychology. She has been the William B. Ransford Professor of Psychology at Columbia University and is now the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her scholarly book Self-Theories: Their Role in Motivation, Personality, and Development was named Book of the Year by the World Education Fellowship. Her work has been featured in such publications as The New Yorker, Time, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Boston Globe, and she has appeared on Today and 20/20. She lives with her husband in Palo Alto, California.

    About the Book, Mindset (Amazon)

    The updated edition of the book that has changed millions of lives with its insights into the growth mindset.

    After decades of research, world-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., discovered a simple but groundbreaking idea: the power of mindset. In this brilliant book, she shows how success in school, work, sports, the arts, and almost every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. People with a fixed mindset—those who believe that abilities are fixed—are less likely to flourish than those with a growth mindset—those who believe that abilities can be developed. Mindset reveals how great parents, teachers, managers, and athletes can put this idea to use to foster outstanding accomplishment.

    In this edition, Dweck offers new insights into her now famous and broadly embraced concept. She introduces a phenomenon she calls false growth mindset and guides people toward adopting a deeper, truer growth mindset. She also expands the mindset concept beyond the individual, applying it to the cultures of groups and organizations. With the right mindset, you can motivate those you lead, teach, and love—to transform their lives and your own.

    Praise for Mindset

    “A good book is one whose advice you believe. A great book is one whose advice you follow. This is a book that can change your life, as its ideas have changed mine.”—Robert J. Sternberg, co-author of Teaching for Wisdom, Intelligence, Creativity, and Success

    “An essential read for parents, teachers [and] coaches . . . as well as for those who would like to increase their own feelings of success and fulfillment.”—Library Journal (starred review)

    “Everyone should read this book.”—Chip Heath and Dan Heath, authors of Made to Stick

    “One of the most influential books ever about motivation.”—Po Bronson, author of NurtureShock

    “If you manage people or are a parent (which is a form of managing people), drop everything and read Mindset.”—Guy Kawasaki, author of The Art of the Start 2.0 









     









    Here’s a great talk about mindset by Dr. Dweck.

    Our next reading selection is:

    The ONE Thing by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan (September 23, 2020)

    Show Notes – Mindset:

    (Please listen to understand the context of the resources provided. If we missed something, please comment on the episode and let us know!)



    * a href="https://amzn.

    • 50 min
    Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life by Nir Eyal

    Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life by Nir Eyal

    Productivity Book Group [ http://productivitybookgroup.org ] discussed Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life by Nir Eyal. Enjoy the discussion!



    About Nir Eyal (Amazon)

    Nir Eyal is the bestselling author of “Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products” and “Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life.”

    He has taught at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. His writing on technology, psychology, and business appears in the Harvard Business Review, The Atlantic, TechCrunch, and Psychology Today.

    Nir blogs regularly at NirAndFar.com

    About the Book (Amazon)

    “Indistractable provides a framework that will deliver the focus you need to get results.”

    — James Clear, author of Atomic Habits

    You sit down at your desk to work on an important project, but a notification on your phone interrupts your morning. Later, as you’re about to get back to work, a colleague taps you on the shoulder to chat. At home, screens get in the way of quality time with your family. Another day goes by, and once again, your most important personal and professional goals are put on hold.

    What would be possible if you followed through on your best intentions? What could you accomplish if you could stay focused and overcome distractions? What if you had the power to become “indistractable?”

    International bestselling author, former Stanford lecturer, and behavioral design expert, Nir Eyal, wrote Silicon Valley’s handbook for making technology habit-forming. Five years after publishing Hooked, Eyal reveals distraction’s Achilles’ heel in his groundbreaking new book.

    In Indistractable, Eyal reveals the hidden psychology driving us to distraction. He describes why solving the problem is not as simple as swearing off our devices: Abstinence is impractical and often makes us want more.

    Eyal lays bare the secret of finally doing what you say you will do with a four-step, research-backed model. Indistractable reveals the key to getting the best out of technology, without letting it get the best of us.

    Inside, Eyal overturns conventional wisdom and reveals:



    * Why distraction at work is a symptom of a dysfunctional company culture–and how to fix it

    * What really drives human behavior and why “time management is pain management”

    * Why your relationships (and your sex life) depend on you becoming indistractable

    * How to raise indistractable children in an increasingly distracting world



    Empowering and optimistic, Indistractable provides practical, novel techniques to control your time and attention–helping you live the life you really want.













    Here’s a great talk about Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life by Nir Eyal at RSA.

    Show Notes:



    * Gmail



    * Schedule Send

    * Labels

    * Snooze





    * Pocket

    * Narro

    * Brainswarming



    (Please listen to understand the context of the resources provided.

    • 49 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
3 Ratings

3 Ratings

Wil Ng ,

Great interaction about productivity

With so many productivity books, it’s nice to be able to get a heads-up about what people are reading and discover new books. I’ve actually bought many books based on the weekly book reading.

Top Podcasts In Business

Listeners Also Subscribed To