Take Back Your Power | Deborah Liu

Summary of: Take Back Your Power: 10 New Rules for Women at Work
By: Deborah Liu

Introduction

Embark on a transformative journey to workplace productivity and personal success with ‘Take Back Your Power: 10 New Rules for Women at Work’ by Deborah Liu. This book summary delves into the intricacies of identifying meaningful objectives, overcoming internal limiting beliefs, and utilizing Microsoft Outlook as an organizing tool. Discover how you can align your personal goals with your company’s mission, manage interruptions effectively, and maintain a seamless workflow with the help of the MPS Cycle of Productivity and the Integrated Management System. Get ready to unlock your potential and take back control of your life.

Productivity: Doing the right things

Many managers misunderstand productivity by thinking it means completing many tasks daily. However, real productivity involves accomplishing the right things. To identify the right activities, organizations must set meaningful objectives. Clear goals help people understand which data to collect, what to decide, and how to organize, plan, prioritize and allocate time. The objectives a person sets determine how productive they are. To improve productivity, one must overcome internal limiting beliefs that hinder it. For example, it’s essential to recognize it’s impossible to handle all the incoming information. Responding to every request is also a limiting belief that must be addressed. Positive precepts can replace negative ones that limit productivity, having discipline is a choice, and a person can create limits to manage interruptions successfully. Anyone seeking to boost their productivity can modify the way they handle their responsibilities, and they can use Microsoft Outlook and MPS Cycle of Productivity and its MPS Integrated Management System.

Creating a Productive Outlook

The book emphasizes the use of Outlook as a tool to help achieve meaningful objectives. It advocates for setting major goals and breaking them down into single-step activities called ‘Strategic Next Actions’ (SNAs), which do not require dependencies. The book advises against filling your To-Do List with tasks that don’t link to your objectives. Instead, it emphasizes focusing on completing your SNAs using the four-step MPS Cycle of Productivity program. The four steps are; developing meaningful objectives and execution plans, planning for strategic next actions, scheduling and completing those strategic actions, and routinely reviewing and adjusting your activity plan. Additionally, you are encouraged to align your meaningful objectives with your company’s goals and post them in your To-Do List as overarching priorities.

Productivity Pyramid

The book outlines a productivity program structured as a pyramid called the “MPS Action Hierarchy Model.” This model lists the company’s mission and value statements at the top, followed by unifying goals that should span at least a year, contain measurements, and fulfill the company’s mission. Personal meaningful objectives are on another level, followed by supporting projects, tasks, and subtasks at the pyramid’s base. The book warns against common disruptions to productivity, such as too many goals, constantly changing priorities, and too much information, and suggests being proactive by scheduling work periods to avoid interruptions.

Integrated Management System

The Integrated Management System (IMS) is composed of three parts: the Collecting System, Reference System, and Action System. By using Microsoft Outlook’s ControlPanel, IMS can manage both work and personal goals. IMS enables coordination of unifying goals, meaningful objectives, supporting projects, tasks, subtasks, and strategic next actions. Outlook covers both business and personal activities, but users must ensure their company’s policies allow tracking of both personal and professional productivity. To use IMS, link it to personal digital assistants such as BlackBerry or iPhone for instant access.

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