Monday, 28 September 2015

If You Don't Ask - You Don't Get!

I’m currently putting together the February article for my Business of Writing column in Writing Magazine and, because next year is a leap year and we’re getting a whole extra day in which to write, I’m looking at productivity techniques.

I’ve approached a selection of writers asking for their tips, but I also wanted to get a couple of quotes from a productivity expert. One of the best-known productivity experts is an American man called David Allen, who wrote the book: Getting Things Done. (He’s such an expert he’s often referred to as a ‘productivity guru’.) And he’s sold a few copies of that book too … nearly two million copies worldwide. His Getting Things Done technique is now a multi-million dollar business for him, and he’s recently updated his bestselling book (check out the new version at: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Getting-Things-Done-Stress-free-Productivity/dp/0349408947/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1443110510&sr=8-1&keywords=David+Allen

My immediate thought was: No, don’t even bother trying to get in touch with him. His company executives will filter out his emails, the chances of him responding are practically zero. It would be a waste of time.

But the more I thought about what I wanted to say in my article, the more I realised that a few quotes from him on a specific aspect of the subject matter would be beneficial. So, nothing ventured, nothing gained - I got in touch.

Twenty four hours later, I had a reply, with some useful quotes, and he’d also sent me the link to download the obligatory author photo, which I could forward to my editor. Brilliant! 

Which goes to show two things:

1. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. 
2. His Getting Things Done technique clearly works, because he had plenty of time in which to answer my questions ;-)

So next time you find a little voice inside your head telling you not to bother - tell it to shut up and just do it.


Good luck!

3 comments:

  1. I am absolutely with you on the 'if you don't ask you don't get' front. It's surprising what can be achieved with this attitude... and nothing can be lost.

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  2. Great advice, Simon and I'm really looking forward to reading your article. Wishing you a very productive week.

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