Working the Low Tech Way

We’ve been conditioned to believe that technology is the solution to our productivity problems. Not so! Stepping away from your technology for a day can make you more productive.

Stever Robbins
4-minute read
Episode #263

Plan Ahead

You see, unlike my laptop, my backpack had severely limited capacity. So each morning, I had to look over my to-do list and my calendar and consciously decide my priorities. “Today, I want to work on the Quicken credit card, writing performance reviews for my team, and learning C++.” Then I would grab my notebook for writing out code, my performance review notebook, and my C++ manual, pop them into my backpack, and off I’d go to the park.

My laptop can be used to work on anything; it makes me sloppy in prioritizing!

Paradoxically, the fact that my laptop can be used to work on anything makes me much sloppier in my prioritizing. When I was forced to make decisions each day, I was better at focusing on what’s important.

Bring Reference Material

Not only would I bring along the tools for my projects, I’d bring along reference material. If I were working on performance reviews, I’d have to decide what I needed to do a good job. If my team members had 360-degree reviews, notes from conversations we’d had, and lists of modules they had worked on, I’d find and bring the relevant information.

Paradoxically, the fact that my laptop can hold 500 GB of information and access the entire human race’s knowledge base makes me much sloppier in my decision-making. When I was forced to choose and bring reference material each day, I was better at identifying what information I needed and knowing in advance how I intended to use it to get work done.


About the Author

Stever Robbins

Stever Robbins was the host of the podcast Get-it-Done Guy from 2007 to 2019. He is a graduate of W. Edward Deming’s Total Quality Management training program and a Certified Master Trainer Elite of NLP. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in Computer Sciences from MIT.