Meta-Skills, Macro-Laws, and the Power of Constraints
Tiago Forte
343

Tiago, I had to write this down even before I finished your story. This, you inspired but who know it could be worthless.

Unless you are a prodigy , you have to play from sheet music before you can play from memory and then after much experience you can improvise genius.

The other thought about was the massive productivity increase that can be achieved when the tasks that need to be completed numerous and varied and the worker has complete discretion as to what tasks to work in what order and no distraction or even alternative to working on them.

Of course motivation is also a factor, deadlines and stakes count.

I will call this the Apollo 13 effect. You basically Live the Job until it is done. Nothing else matters but the goal and you are challenged with the seemingly impossible.

I worked with a team trying to activate a critical system on a launch pad that was badly behind schedule and we were drafted to get it back on track, we were a diverse team of experienced 30 year old white males, diverse, yeah, we came from 5 different aerospace companies. We were away from home and wanted to fix the problems, get it done and get back to normal life, living in Hotels or Condo’s on expenses before anyone had laptops or cell phones. There was a seemingly endless list of tasks that need to be done so we could pick our poison, we had some go getters who when right for the spider venom. It was 90 days of the Job is your life. We were the most effective and productive team I can remember.

Like what you read? Give Tim Knowles a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.