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SuperCompetent: The Six Keys to Perform at Your Productive Best by Laura Stack

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Part 4. SuperCompetent Key 4: Accessibility

Note

SuperCompetent people can quickly find the information they need.

ACCESSIBILITY is the ability to organize the inputs and outputs in your life.

This key gives you the systems you need to locate data contained in any medium: paper, e-mail, phone calls, contacts, Internet, and so on.

When I was in college in the mid-80s, I attended my first time-management course. The instructor told us to write our schedules for the entire day, including the specific time we would work on each task. I dutifully wrote up-to-the-minute agendas, detailing what I would complete: "From 8:00 to 8:30, I'll do this . . . from 8:30 to 9:10, I'll do this . . . "

Back then, I could pretty much keep up with it, and the day usually went as planned. When something unexpected arose, it was fairly easy to adjust my plan. Then things started to change: Technology exploded, voicemail, e-mail, and the Internet entered the scene, and the productivity game was forever altered. If you attempted nowadays to write out every minute of your day, how long would your schedule last? It would probably blow up in the first five minutes. You could probably spend more time revising the plan than simply doing your work!

Indeed, it has become harder to be productive, for all these reasons:

  • We're busier than ever before—because we have more to do, with fewer resources, and less time to do it in.

  • We're more disorganized than ever before, because we receive information from multiple sources and ...

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