View Full Version : Ask David any question
08-04-2006, 08:35 AM
If you could ask David Allen any one question about GTD, what would it be?
We may be creating some kind of Q&A with David soon, and we'd love to hear from all of you here in the Forums to make sure your ideas are included. So what's that one burning question you wish you could ask the man himself? :)
To get things warmed up, here's mine:
-When was your biggest "aha" moment while you were creating GTD? I'm very curious about your creative process since you created such an originial framework, so was there a moment when things suddenly clicked?
I will be checking back to see your questions, so ask away!!
08-04-2006, 09:30 AM
Here are some questions that I would ask David:
To explain how he personally goes over his higher altitude reviews and how frequently?
What are his biggest struggles with GTD?
Where is the next step for GTD, what is on the horizon?
08-04-2006, 02:09 PM
"David, what are the guiding principles you use in hiring great people to assist you in leading and managing Davidco."
"How often do you meet with Sr. Staff and what kind of subjects do you deal with in your meetings?"
"What tools do you use in maintaining your own GTD system?"
08-04-2006, 05:09 PM
Thanks for the opportunity, Lisa, and for the great forum. I'd ask:
Thank you very much for your contribution - you've helped me tremendously. If you were advising someone starting out in the field of personal productivity consulting, what would be your top tips?
Matthew Cornell, M.S.
34 Dickinson Street, Amherst MA 01002
413-256-8832, "matthewcornell" (skype)
08-06-2006, 10:40 AM
David, I am impressed with the psychological insight of the system. Where did you find these? How did you develop the psychological foundation of GTD?
Let' say one wants to gain a similiar net of psychological grounds for a body of work for one's own field. Which steps do you suggest one to undertake?
08-06-2006, 01:01 PM
I would like to know what motivated you to study and analyse aspects of personal productivity to such a detailed and profound level?
08-07-2006, 11:08 AM
And here's another...
How many hours week do you recommend for maintaining a trusted GTD system, ie for updating lists on a daily basis, weekly review, project planning etc.?
08-07-2006, 01:45 PM
Thanks for the opportunity to ask David a question:
1. In the book you say that it may take more than a weekend to set up, depending if you want to set up at home too. I'm now fully set up at work- increasing productivity and impressing my colleagues, but home/school is feeling overwhelming (and, I must admit, after doing GTD diligently all day at work I am reluctant to start up again at home). Could you give some more examples/a timeline of how to set up GTD at home?
Thanks for the excellent ideas and forum
08-08-2006, 08:38 AM
I posted these questions over at 43Folders, but I thought I'd run them here too.....
I’d ask David the following questions:
What are the implications of GTD for spirituality? Is there a spirituality behind GTD (obviously I think there is) and how can that be fleshed out and understood? What does GTD imply for “big issues” like peace and poverty in the world?
How can GTD be incorporated into education for our children?
Does GTD “work” in different social structures? In other words, can the UN use GTD? The Peace Corps? What would that look like?
Can GTD be pushed to an organizational model? GTD seems to focus on personal productivity. but is there some way that GTD could become a “new” quality assurance program or something like that? Can you “GTD” your organization beyond just GTDing the individuals?
I attended one of the Boston seminars....wish I'd asked him some of these then. Oh well.
08-08-2006, 12:55 PM
David, we've all read GTD, but I'm interested in hearing what you read. What are a few of your favorite books?
08-08-2006, 02:37 PM
When your clients let the system slip, what is the best way for them to get back into the system, in your experience?
In Getting Things Done there’s a line that says, “Let’s assume for a moment that you’re not resisting any of your ’stuff’ out of insecurity or procrastination.” At this point, less assume the opposite. Do you have any strategies for dealing with the psychological barriers that lead to insecurity/procrastination?
08-08-2006, 03:40 PM
Thank you for developing Gtd and for sharing it with the world.
A few questions come to mind:
1. After five years of using Gtd for Time management, I'm finally starting to understand how powerful your planning philosophy (20,000 foot and above) could be for LIFE management. But I sure could use a kickstart in this area. When my wife passed away five years ago, I lost interest in life planning and just focused on "doing stuff" (and your methods helped me to do it well and to survive it all). Now it's time for me to look forward. While I've read books in this area, and was actually not bad at doing it at one time, getting going on it again is hard, and any insights you could offer on how to really do this planning "from scratch" would be greatly appreciated.
2. Have you considered developing Palm/Windows Mobile software to sync with your Gtd Plugin for Outlook?
3. Speaking of PDAs, did you develop some Palm software years ago called Actioneer? Seems like I heard your name associated with it one time.
Thank you very much,
08-09-2006, 05:54 AM
Is there anything about the GTD methodology as presented in the the book that you would change or amplify after several years of seeing people implement the principles as you originally presented them?
08-09-2006, 09:30 AM
Are you really going to make me create a bunch of fake logins here just to ask more than one question ;-?
OK if I had to ask him one it would be:
"How do you suggest people figure out when to do their weekly review? If I do it Sunday night, I find myself staying up late because I get into something. If I do it Monday morning, I seem to spend all day doing the review and little else. If I do it at the end of the week I find that there are things I feel I need to do now and don't get any downtime."
If I could ask another it would be:
"How do you help people manage all of their various INBOXes? I have a stack of stuff that I want to read (magazines, journals, etc) which just keep coming. Then the various bits of other paper (mail, meeting notes, agendas, etc). Then there's stuff in email. Then there are the To Dos/Notes/Next Actions in my Palm. I feel like I have too many places to check, but I can't figure out how to consolidate them any further."
I'll probably think of more, but those are the first two which came to mind.
08-09-2006, 01:24 PM
How has GTD (in your practice, in the seminars, etc.) evolved since the publication of the book, and will we see some of that evolution in a second edition of Getting Things Done or some other book?
...a second edition of Getting Things Done or some other book?
Getting Things Doner?
Sorry, I couldn't resist!
08-09-2006, 10:34 PM
...a second edition of Getting Things Done or some other book?
Or maybe "Getting Things Done. The Stuff Strikes Back" for those who fell off the bandwagon.
08-10-2006, 12:14 AM
Or maybe "Getting Things Done. The Stuff Strikes Back" for those who fell off the bandwagon.Or perhaps "I still know what you didn't get done last summer".
08-14-2006, 05:35 PM
I would like to know,
"What was the single insight over the course of you own history, that increased your personal productivity the most?"
"When you began to see GTD as a system, what was the linchpin experience or insight that pulled it all together?"
I guess I'm looking to enjoy the story, just as much as I am interested in the actual answer.
08-17-2006, 11:09 AM
Here's what I'd ask David:
In Organizing Ideas
Business Organizing Solutions
"Here are some statistics worth paying attention to.
1. By concentrating single-mindedly on your most important task, you can reduce the time required to complete it by 50% or more.
2. It has been estimated that the tendency to start and stop a task, to pick it up, put it down, and come back to it, can increase the time necessary to complete the task by as much as 500%."
What's your take on this David--Do you try to finish each task completely, or do you think it's equally effective to start several things at once, should the opportunity arise?
08-17-2006, 02:16 PM
It seems from reading the forum that some people understand and implement the system readily while others struggle with it. Do you and your colleagues have data (or ideas) about what the common difficulties are in learning and implementing GTD? What approaches would seem most useful to determine what kinds of difficulties people have in learning and implementing the system? How can the most common problems be prevented or corrected? Is anybody evaluating the efficacy of different approaches to the teaching and coaching?
08-18-2006, 05:04 AM
What do you think about maintaining two separate GTD systems - one for work activities and one for home/personal activities? Such setup makes it possible to separate work stuff from home/personal stuff - I think many people need such separation.
08-18-2006, 05:59 AM
I think that he covered that in the book and said that there should NOT be two separate systems. I don't remember what page it was on but it was in Chaper 1. Allen makes no distinctions between work and personal lives.
Can you explain what is really meant by "no distinctions between work and personal lives"?
To me there are huge distinctions between the two, and I have a complete other set of projects for my role as a scout leader that needs an system as well.
I think it may be taken out of context, and truly mean just that you have one system for all your roles (or Areas of Focus).
I have two questions:
You’ve made the analogy between GTD and martial arts (white belt, brown belt, etc.). When you spend a weekend coaching someone on collecting and processing, where are they on that scale when you finish the weekend?
How long does it take without a coach? If someone buys the book and tries to follow it on their own, how long does the collecting and processing typically take?