Thomas Edison once said “Genius: one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.” Scott Belsky took this quote to heart. He may not have invented the light globe, but he sure did reinvent the link between creativity and productivity for me, and many others that have discovered his work.
I want to introduce you to 3 tools: a Book, an App and a Blog that have helped me to change the way that I look at my creativity, my ideas and most importantly, how I act on them. You see I am a very creative person. My head literally explodes with ideas in the shower, or when walking on the beach* ….but I don’t always execute them perfectly…or at all. Are you like this? Then read on. There is hope for us creative types. Let me get straight into it and introduce you to my 3 productivity friends:
- Making Ideas Happen (Book)– This book was written by Scott Belsky (Founder of Creative Agency “Behance” and the
creative conference 99 Percent. The book looks at how “the world’s leading innovators push their ideas to fruition time and time again…and how ideas of businesses, creative projects and the solutions to the world’s problems are common, but great execution is rare”. According to Belsky, “the capacity to make ideas happen can be strengthened by anyone willing to build their organizational habits and harness the forces of community.” Making Ideas Happen is based on his research interviewing hundreds of successfully creative people and compiling all the successful practices that enabled them to achieve outcomes with their creative ideas. He founded his company, Behance to help creative people and teams across industries to develop these skills. I have loved this book – because it makes you look at your ability to act on your ideas vs generating them – a skill many of us could use more of! It is filled with great tips for making your ideas happen, and coupled with the App, it is a great weapon for changing the way that you do things, becoming more productive and getting more out of your day (and perhaps seeing more ideas come to fruition!).
- The Action Method (App) – This is a fabulous organising system that has developed from the Book. It is available as paper products but its most popular use is on iphone and ipad as an App. The app syncs with the website so you always have the most up to date version. I use it daily to organise my projects into specific “action steps” that are designed to achieve outcomes. I can move particular tasks into “focus” and set deadlines or delegate tasks to others (if you are working in a team). I am still getting used to using the App rather than writing random thoughts and lists on paper or sticky notes and in my diary, but the more I use it the more productive I feel. So far, I am getting a lot more done! Note: I love the fact that there is a “nag” function if you need to remind someone about a job. I work mainly alone on my projects, but I would love to be able to press that from time to time. Sadly I think it is me that needs the nagging for the most part, lol.
- 99 Percent (Blog) If you want even more info I would recommend following Scott Belsky’s 99 Percent Blog, or if you are a Twitter person follow him via @scottbelsky or @the99percent. All sites produce great articles about the Action Method, and the 99 Percent Creative Think Tank held annually – as well as articles on productivity and business. Check it out.
* Apparently when you are in the shower or walking barefoot on the earth, you become “grounded” which is why you have more clarity of thought, and possibly why many of us have our best ideas in these locations.
Check out this great post about the changes that can happen in 30 days using the Action Method.
Have you heard of Action Method or the 99 Percent? What productivity tools or tricks do you use to take action on your amazing ideas?