In this era of lockdowns, its displacement of the normal working order, and its effect on mental health, productivity has become a front-burner issue and last time out, I gave some very useful tips on how to stay productive working from home. Today, I’m following it up with a curation of the best productivity books of all time, for all situations.
The best productivity books of all time
There are a number of factors – including poor time management, procrastination, stress, and distractions – that reduce our productivity. However, luckily, these list of best-selling productivity books are all-encompassing.
So, whether you’re a CEO desirous of improving their productivity, an employee looking to be more productive working from home or at work, or an individual who just wants to increase their overall efficiency, these books will help you achieve your goals.
1. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen Covey)
With over 25 million copies sold worldwide, the best thing about The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is the ability of its principles to shape the thinking of top executives, budding entrepreneurs, and students alike.
When it comes to completely simplifying the process of managing one’s professional occupation and personal life effectively, these book by Stephen R. Covey is your go-to resource.
Covey uses more of a mind-shift method than a pragmatic action-plan. It opens your mind to recognize opportunities for a more productive approach in the activities you already do and new ones you can adopt.
2. Getting Things Done(David Allen)
Getting Things Done is not simply motivational, it is very detailed – perhaps too detailed – and full of actionable step-by-step guides on how to be productive. It’s more like a manual that you can consult from time to time if you’re struggling in one area of efficiency or productivity.
If an organization is looking to develop a staff guide on productivity, they will do well to study and follow many of the principles in this book.
3. The One Thing (Gary Keller)
The frustrating thing about this is, while dissipating time and energy, and perhaps working harder than ever before, your productivity is suffering in the most important aspects of your life. This sort of productivity crisis is what The One Thing sets out to tackle.
The One Thing promotes the idea that productivity and, ultimately, more outstanding results are guaranteed when a few very important goals are chased with full focus.
4. Eat that Frog (Brian Tracy)
Eat That Frog is anchored on this popular saying: “Eat a live frog the first thing in the morning, and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.”
It promotes the concept of starting the day by tackling the most challenging task – the one you are most likely to procrastinate on – and getting it over with. Overall, it’s a great book on learning to manage time, organize tasks, and deal with procrastination.
5. The Power of Habit (Charles Duhigg)
He posits that understanding how habits work, discarding bad ones, and forming new ones is key to achieving good results in any endeavour whatsoever, from one day to the next.
The Power of Habit, besides being mostly relatable, is also a fun-read – one that I’ve read twice.
A first-rate book—based on an impressive mass of research, written in a lively style and providing just the right balance of intellectual seriousness with practical advice on how to break our bad habits.
6. The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Timothy Ferriss)
The 4-Hour Workweek, while challenging established norms, offers strategies on improving productivity that will serve as a catalyst for financial freedom and a dream lifestyle.
7. Free to Focus (Michael Hyatt)
Best-selling author Hyatt questions the usual concept of productivity as getting much done in as little time as possible, where many people’s professional lives take up almost all the time needed for other things like rest, recreation and time for family.
Similar to The One Thing, he submits that productivity is more about getting the right things properly done.
He suggests cutting out the nonessentials, filtering tasks, and eliminating distractions as some of the strategies needed for productivity.