Monday, May 9, 2011

Do More Great Work: Stop The Busywork. Start The Work That Matters

Do More Great Work: Stop the Busywork. Start the Work That Matters.

Do More Great Work: Stop the Busywork. Start the Work That Matters.
By Michael Bungay Stanier

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Product Description

You work hard. You put in the hours. Yet you feel like you are constantly treading water with "Good Work" that keeps you going but never quite moves you ahead. Or worse, you are mired in "Bad Work"—endless meetings and energy-draining bureaucratic traps.

Do More Great Work gets to the heart of the problem: Even the best performers are spending less than a fraction of their time doing "Great Work"—the kind of innovative work that pushes us forward, stretches our creativity, and truly satisfies us. Michael Bungay Stanier, Canadian Coach of the Year in 2006, is a business consultant who's found a way to move us away from bad work (and even good work), and toward more time spent doing great work.

When you're up to your eyeballs answering e-mail, returning phone calls, attending meetings and scrambling to get that project done, you can turn to this inspirational, motivating, and at times playful book for invaluable guidance. In fifteen exercises, Do More Great Work shows how you can finally do more of the work that engages and challenges you, that has a real impact, that plays to your strengths—and that matters.

The exercises are "maps"—brilliantly simple visual tools that help you find, start and sustain Great Work, revealing how to:

  • Find clues to your own Great Work—they're all around you
  • Locate the sweet spot between what you want to do and what your organization wants you to do
  • Generate new ideas and possibilities quickly
  • Best manage your overwhelming workload
  • Double the likelihood that you'll do what you want to do
All it takes is ten minutes a day, a pencil and a willingness to change. Do More Great Work will not only help you identify what the Great Work of your life is, it will tell you how to do it.

Product Details

  • Amazon Sales Rank: #2640 in Books
  • Published on: 2010-02-22
  • Original language: English
  • Number of items: 1
  • Dimensions: .58" h x 6.86" w x 6.80" l, .72 pounds
  • Binding: Paperback
  • 200 pages


  • ISBN13: 9780761156444
  • Condition: New
  • Notes: BRAND NEW FROM PUBLISHER! BUY WITH CONFIDENCE, Over one million books sold! 98% Positive feedback. Compare our books, prices and service to the competition. 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed

Editorial Reviews

"If I had to pick a person to have dinner with, when I need to be prodded and challenged..., I'd pick Michael Bungay Stanier. He has an ability to shake our tree and make us more conscious and responsible. And the best part—he makes it easy and fun."

--David Allen, bestselling author of the Getting Things Done

About the Author
Michael Bungay Stanier is the founder and senior partner of Box of Crayons, a company that works with organizations, ranging from AstraZeneca to Xerox, to help them do more great work. A Rhodes scholar who earned both arts and law degrees with highest honors from Australian National University and an MPhil from Oxford, he is a popular speaker at business and coaching conferences, and was named Canadian Coach of the Year in 2006. He lives in Toronto.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews

64 of 65 people found the following review helpful.
4Exercise workbook...Love the Maps
The author, Michael Bungay Stanier, was the Canadian executive coach of the year in 2006 and is a business consultant. Core message of the book is that many of us do far too much good work ("treading water") or bad work (energy draining activities) and not enough great work (offering true satisfaction). Stanier opens the book by defining Bad Work, Good Work and Great Work. And then rolls into the 15 short and snappy exercises supported by highly effective visual maps to help guide you through the process via brainstorming, reflection, analysis of actual observations.

1) Where are you now? (Map current mix of bad, good and great work. Assess)
2) What's Great? (Recall peak moments. Assess)
3) What are you like at your best? (Recall emotions at peak moments. Map "I am this...not that")
4) Who's great? (Think of role models that are inspiring and assess why. Choose characteristic. Emulate & Visualize)
5) What's Calling You? (Scan landscape for great opportunities. Analyze. What surprised you? Inspired you?)
6) What's Broken? (Map aggravations that "erode the quality of our lives." Assess. What can you change)
7) What's Required? (Map all the work you do on daily or weekly basis into one of 4 quadrants: a) They Care/You Care (Sweet spot/Do more-convert from good to great work) (b) They Care/I don't care. (Stop doing), (c) I Don't Care/They Care (Must do - delegate or be more efficient-embrace adequacy." (d) You Care/They Don't Care (Do it Elsewhere; do it undercover; re-label it)

8) What's the Best Choice? (Map your options. Rate/rank the options.
9) What's Possible? (Map creative new ideas and explore what can be converted to great work)
10) What's the Right Ending? (Explore different ways forward - What can be, what's changed, new outcome)
11)How Courageous are You? (Map safe to impossible methods to do more great work)
12)What Will you do? (Map (a) what is easiest to do, (b) what would have the greatest impact, (c) what do you want to do, (d) what Will you do)
13)What Support Do You Need? (Map people who have influence, skills, or love you)
14)What's the Next Step? (Map what you will do, by when, what's the first step, what accountability do you need - then analyze)
15)Lost Your Great Work Mojo? (Revert back to steps 1-14 and assess)

And the book concludes with 4 great work truths:
Great Work Truth #1: Things only get interesting when you take full responsibility for the choices you make.
Great Work Truth #2: To do more Great Work, you must both narrow and broaden your gaze.
Great Work Truth #3: Decide what to say no to.
Great Work Truth #4: Stop Making everyone happy.
Great Work Truth #5: Ask for Help.

This is an exercise workbook (more than a book) where Stanier allows reader to work their way forward to a solution to finding their own Great Work. The book also includes relevant and thoughtful quotes (Camus, Edmund Hillary) and passages from contemporary coaches (Seth Godin, Dave Ulrich, Penelope Trunk).

22 of 25 people found the following review helpful.
5For those that seek inspiration, crave innovation, and want to extract more meaning from life
By Todd B. Kashdan
This is the second book that I purchased from Michael. Don't be deceived by the notion that this book is about being more innovative, energized, and productive in the workplace. By work, Michael is talking about living a life most worth living. He is talking about bringing the same enthusiasm that you have for Alaskan crab legs and flirtatious conversations with a loved one to every life domain.

I wonder where this book will appear in bookstores. Business book? Self-enhancement book? Psychology book? Do More Great Work transcends categories. I suspect that you are skeptical of these superlatives but I honestly do not take the time to write reviews unless an author inspired me. Michael does (again).

He prods, provokes, and challenges you to answer questions about your life that can often be uncomfortable. He gives you a playground of exercises to uncover values, strengths, and situations governing your behavior, and how to navigate with them to effectively emerge as a mindful, passionate leader.

I am purposely avoiding specific details about what is in the book because it is impossible to cover the broad terrain and I hesitate to emphasize small snippets out of context. There are dozens of questions and exercises that are useful on their own and even more powerfully together. None of these questions are silly, none of them are superfluous, and if you are receptive, this book has the potential to evoke meaningful change.

Are you content with mediocracy or do you want to do something profound with your limited time and stamina in the only life you will ever be given? If you want the latter, get this book. I stake my reputation on the line.

Todd Kashdan, Ph.D.
Author of Curious?: Discover the Missing Ingredient to a Fulfilling Life

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful.
5Review of 1st edition - Find Your Great Work
By Iopsych
"Find Your Great Work" is structured around a series of "maps" that can help you bring more "great" work into your life. The "maps" in this book seem at first glance to be quite simplistic, almost gimmicky. However, if you can get past the fact that they're "written" on a napkin, they seem quite powerful. This isn't the kind of book that you read once and put on a shelf. While the author might disagree, I would recommend reading the book from cover-to-cover once, without responding to the questions associated with each map, to help immerse yourself in the author's thinking. I believe this would be helpful in either returning to the beginning of the book to work with each map sequentially or before working with those maps that seem to speak to you. This book has the potential to affect your thinking in subtle as well as profound ways. In fact, in writing these comments, I realized that today I said something in a meeting of my direct reports that came straight from "Find Your Great Work" without my even realizing it. I look forward to continuing to work with the contents of this book to bring more great work into my life.


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