Sunday, May 6, 2012

Simplifying Total Tasks

In a recent article from the Business Harvard Review, a great website or magazine for leadership articles, posted an article about the how Steve Jobs led his different teams. More specifically, it looks at his keys to successful leadership. The article is a must read for anyone that holds a leadership position as it shows how he rearranged Apple's goals and priorities and to how he treated his employees. However, upon further retrospection I realized that these can be applied to our daily tasks. The question is how?

This article will only discuss "focus" and "simplify".

Two of the principles that stood out to me immediately was "Focus" and "Simplify". So, the image above is probably what most people's desktops look like during their daily grind while at work. Cluttered with tons of windows, a browser full of tabs, Outlook demanding attention due to all of the emails, and etc.

The thing is, do we need all these windows and tabs? Do we need our email up at all times? Simplify and focus. has many suggestions for handling email like only checking once a day in the morning or twice a day. This way you can stay on your tasks and have one less window.

For me, I love to have 100 tabs open on Chrome for various reasons. Whether it be for music, Reddit links, or who knows what, I love to have tabs opened as a way to remember to visit them. In an ironic turn of events I realized the other day that I do not remember why most of the tabs that I had opened were still open. To make the problem worse, while developing web pages, I will have old versions of the page opened and thus adding to the confusion if I committed the changes that I did earlier.

When Steve Jobs took over Apple for the second time, he focused on getting rid of the clutter within their products and simplified everything Apple was working on by, again, focusing only on a few products instead of many. Taking this same approach with our daily work habits can help us focus on what is really important.

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