Personal productivity & geekiness

So I was reading Dave Seah’s blog the other day, and came upon his Printable CEO paper forms, and I love them – partly due to the design, but also because the point-based rewards on the main printable ceo really got my brain firing. There’s something about checking off boxes and filling things in that appeals to the geek in me – Dave compares it to standardized testing, but it always reminded me of character sheets.

Pretty much every pen & paper RPG has or had them at some stage or another. They’re sheets of paper preprinted with boxes for filling in attributes, equipment, notes, saving throws, armour class and all that jazz. There’s something about them that appeals to me, not just the thrill of checking off a box, but of putting a number in it, changing things around, and always having that imposed structure for my notes. I guess that’s why I love the Cornell system so much.

Back to Dave’s Printable CEO – the sheet gives you different amounts of points for different things, based on how well it improves your business – 10 points for billable work versus 2 points for blog articles or self promotion, for example. This reminded me a lot of the experience points used in most RPGs – they gauge a character’s progress by awarding points for different actions, and the more experience points you gfet the better and more accomplished you are.

Surfing through Dave’s blog also took me to Phil Newtons notes on his own paper based tracking system, with bits based on the b-Alert system. I liked the b-Alert system immediately, and soon lots of different things came together in my mind.

What about a points system rewarding progress in the six different areas of the system?

So here’s where I am so far, but what do you guys think? Anything you’d add or take away?

b (Blueprints)

+1 point for each blueprint made
+3 points if it is secure

A (Action)

Number of individual major tasks completed, squared (e.g. 1 point if one task completed, 4 if 2, 9 if 3, etc).
Risky action: +3
Action made you feel a little uncomfortable: +2
1 action failed: +2
2 actions failed: +1
3 actions failed: 0
4 actions failed: -1
(adding points to failures in the hope that they would function as a learning experience: I’m also thinking this will encourage me to go on with something even if I’m not sure if I can do it, since I’ll get the XP bonus anyway 😉 )

l (Learning)

Books: #Pages / 10
Blogs: #Articles / 10
Classes or other learning activities: #hours x 2

e (Exercise)

#Minutes spent / 6

r (Relaxation)

#minutes spent /6
#times laughed x2

t (Thinking)

#minutes spent /12

Man, I am SUCH a geek…

2 Responses to “Personal productivity & geekiness”

  1. Phil Newton says:

    Hi Sam!

    I really like some of your ideas, especially the exponential points for completing many tasks. That seems like a great way of pushing yourself that little further to complete “just one more task”. I also like the idea of rewarding yourself for stepping outside of your comfort zone, and getting points for relaxing and laughing.

    I think my version was focussed too tightly on work results, and not enough on creating balance. If there’s one lesson I’ve learnt over the last few months is that relaxation is a very important activity.

    Best of luck with this system, and I look forward to finding out how it works out.



  2. […] So I’ve been using my personal productivity scoring system (outlined here) for a week now, and I have some Reflections and Tweaks as a consequence. […]

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