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food-for-thought*Today’s links deal with management. Self management and organization management as well. This was totally coincidental.

The Pmarca guide to Personal Productivity

Jed Christiansen has been posting Marc Andreessen’s archive over at his blog and at his Posterous page. I’m really glad I stumbled upon the above wisdom nugget. Here’s Andreessen on scheduling:

Let’s start with a bang: don’t keep a schedule. He’s crazy, you say! I’m totally serious. If you pull it off — and in many structured jobs, you simply can’t — this simple tip alone can make a huge difference in productivity. By not keeping a schedule, I mean: refuse to commit to meetings, appointments, or activities at any set time in any future day. As a result, you can always work on whatever is most important or most interesting, at any time. Want to spend all day writing a research report? Do it! Want to spend all day coding? Do it! Want to spend all day at the cafe down the street reading a book on personal productivity? Do it! When someone emails or calls to say, “Let’s meet on Tuesday at 3”, the appropriate response is: “I’m not keeping a schedule for 2007, so I can’t commit to that, but give me a call on Tuesday at 2:45 and if I’m available, I’ll meet with you.” Or, if it’s important, say, “You know what, let’s meet right now.”


Hating What You Do

Companies should be aware of that there’s such a thing as over-management, specially in these shitty times we’re living in.

SUICIDE, proclaimed Albert Camus in “The Myth of Sisyphus”, is the only serious philosophical problem. In France at the moment it is also a serious management problem. A spate of attempted and successful suicides at France Telecom—many of them explicitly prompted by troubles at work—has sparked a national debate about life in the modern corporation. One man stabbed himself in the middle of a meeting (he survived). A woman leapt from a fourth-floor office window after sending a suicidal e-mail to her father: “I have decided to kill myself tonight…I can’t take the new reorganisation.” In all, 24 of the firm’s employees have taken their own lives since early 2008—and this grisly tally follows similar episodes at other pillars of French industry including Renault, Peugeot and EDF.


The Gervais Principle, Or The Office according to the Office

In depth look at how the show The Office is more than just a parody of office culture, but a deep inquiry about the uselessness of corporate management.

The Office is not a random series of cynical gags aimed at momentarily alleviating the existential despair of low-level grunts. It is a fully-realized theory of management that falsifies 83.8% of the business section of the bookstore.