Edward Lamont Archives - Next Action Associates
Flow, flow, flow your boat…

Flow, flow, flow your boat…

Again? Can’t be. We stopped paddling to allow ourselves to focus. Sure enough, there they were: an older couple, drifting along in their inflatable canoe. Ahead of us, again. My canoeing partner and I exchanged minor expletives under our breath. We were about 90...
No work, no playa

No work, no playa

A bad system will beat a good person every time. – W. Edwards Deming Tuesday was my first day back after a couple of weeks of stay-cating here in London. Doing London-y things, some of which I’ve been meaning to do since arriving 21 years ago. It was a delicious...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

Like much of Europe, I’m off on my summer holiday. Unlike much of Europe, I’ve had a an e-mail arrive with a question about how to handle e-mail while on holiday. What to do? The sender did a seminar a year or so ago, and since then has been working at implementing as...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

For Whom the Cell Tolls

“You work too hard to be successful.“ Tom had been having a quick look at his e-mail under the table of the sidewalk café, but this last sentence from across the table jolted him back to reality. He considered himself a moderately successful individual, so he was a...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

Inbox Zero? Pfah! So Noughties

When – in desperation – I first skimmed the book Getting Things Done back in 2004, I had a number of epiphanies. One of them was that there were people who were regularly able to empty out their e-mail inboxes. This information, in and of itself, re-defined the game I...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

Goodbye Discipline – Hello Motivation

  One of the clients I worked with recently had quickly understood GTD as a concept and wanted to do it, but was struggling with actually doing it consistently. He finally cracked the problem when he clarified why he wanted GTD, and what it would get him if he...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

The List Exists (Whether You Write it or Not)

I’m no doctor, but here is something I’ve learned from experience: when a muscle goes into spasm and doesn’t recover properly, sometimes it gets to a point where it has been tight for so long that the brain simply stops registering the pain signals it is sending. It...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

It’s Personal

‘I don’t like this exercise’. Given the expression on his face I didn’t actually have to get close enough to hear him to know that he was not enjoying the exercise, but – having learned to keep moving when things are looking good, and to step in when things are...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

Stayin’ Alive

Welcome back. With a bit of a tailwind and a bit of luck, many of you are re-starting after a two-week break thanks to the miracle of seasonal holidays falling very helpfully in the middle of the week. After a slow start early in the week, digital heads are being...
To e-, Or Not to e- . . . Handling e-mail on Holiday

Who is throwing your ball?

  I’m a big fan of dogs. Love ’em. I’m not convinced that there is anything of unconditional love in the response of “Man’s Best Friend” (there is the small matter of MBF having identified a light touch for free food…),...
KO vs TKO – both win the fight

KO vs TKO – both win the fight

Back in the winter of 1976, a low-budget boxing movie came out of nowhere to take the world by storm and win the Academy Award for best picture. You’ll have guessed by now that it was ‘Rocky’, and for this 13 year-old boy it was huge. Epic. Transformational.  I pretty...
KO vs TKO – both win the fight

Abraaaacadabraaaa – Now You See It, Now You Do It

When I was growing up, in our kitchen there was a chalkboard that had pride of place on the wall just beside the back door. My mum basically ran the family (with very little assistance from any of us) off of that chalkboard. With hindsight, it was basically a...

Frequently Asked Questions…

This week, a dive into some of the detail with a round-up of answers to frequently asked questions we are seeing on the web: Question: Can you have more than one next action going at any one time for a project, or do you suggest focusing solely on doing one thing...

How to Prevent World War Z in your Place of Work

For reasons way too complicated to get into here, it seems that as a society we have an obsession with the undead – you only have to look at the number of vampire and zombie movies to see that. Personally, I’m more of a zombie guy than a vampire guy. Although I really...

The Nitty-Gritty – Clearing Out Your Inbox

One of our biggest fans complained a few weeks back. After years of positive feedback about these blogs, he took the time to let us know that he was not satisfied with one of them as he did not feel it was specific enough about what he should actually do as a result...

What Your Problem Is NOT…

 …Or how dodging misattribution could save your job and your sanity. To solve a problem efficiently – or solve it at all – it is necessary to correctly identify the problem. This sounds obvious. It also sounds much easier than it actually is. For starters, there...