The Ivy Lee Method: Experts Recommend for Peak Productivity

This is the real story of an American tycoon of the early twentieth century who was the first man in the world to have earned more than a million dollars a year. Maybe today this figure is not so impressive. It’s about Charles Schwab, the president of the company “Bethlehem Steel”. Because of his leadership, this company has become one of the largest companies in the world.

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Of course, such successes could not be achieved without the correct organization of labor. At the very beginning of the development of the company, Charles Schwab managed to introduce a special method of increasing labor efficiency.

He got the idea from Ivy Lee- consultant of productivity. Ivy Lee asks for 15 minutes, and when Schwab agreed, Lee handed him a sheet of paper and offered to write all the things that he must do tomorrow. After that, he suggested that Schwab arrange the cases in order of importance. And when Schwab did this, Lee said:

“Tomorrow starts the day with the case at number 1 and do not get distracted by anything until you do it. Next, go to case number 2 and also carefully work on it. Then go to case number 3 and so on.

Even if you do not complete your entire list, you will still do the most important things. If you complete your whole plan, and your workday is not over yet, then compose a new list and begin to implement it.

All that you have not done, you can move to the list of the next day. He asks him to use this process for every working day.

The whole secret of this method is to do these actions day in and day out:

  • write a to-do list;
  • assess their importance;
  • Set priorities;
  • Work strictly according to plan.

All that Schwab had to do at his company was to use this method of increasing labor efficiency every day and introduce it into the work of his subordinates.

Lee was so sure of the effectiveness of the method that he suggested testing the system as much as needed. And then pay for his services, setting the price of this system. Schwab decided to use it and a few weeks later Schwab sent Ivey Lee a check for $ 25,000. And then he said that it was the most valuable idea that he ever received.

Since the time of these events, more than a hundred years have passed. But the method of increasing efficiency proposed by Ivy Lee has not lost its relevance.

Ivy Lee method also suggests that we should not do multitasking. Because the fewer tasks you put yourself, the more productive your work will be.

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