How to Be a Productivity Ninja

Productivity Ninja Book Review_300x371Author(s): Graham Allcott

Published: 2012

Report Published: 9th August 2016

Quake Magnitude: 6.0

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Field Survey

Productivity Ninja is a self-help book that doesn’t take itself too seriously yet manages to tell you all the good stuff with the aid of the coolest office ninja drawings known to man! So what could have otherwise turned out to be a dull affair was revealed to be a nifty book filled with more office hacks, tips and tricks than a stationary cupboard full of assassins!

This book is useful for people of all ranks and roles. For CEOs and managers, it is a precursor to Under New Management, in that in order to manage a group effectively you first need to learn how to manage yourself. Whilst, what John Lees’ book How to Find a Job You Love is to the job hunter, Productivity Ninja is to the office junior. Consequently, if I could coax young people into buying just one book on securing their first professional role it would be this one. Why? Well, apart from reducing significantly stress levels, pointless meetings and general desk chaos, following the advice contained within its pages is a sure fire way of rising quickly and quietly up the professional ladder, without resorting to devious tactics.

Finally, and as Allcott rightly states, success is in the details, it is in paying attention to your work and team members, not just in spending time and looking busy… wise advice indeed!


“Change the paradigm from ‘what if it goes wrong? to ‘what if it doesn’t?’”

“If there was a worse invention in old school ‘time management’ babble than the idea of ‘multitasking’ I would love to know.”

“Attention is your currency. Time might be spent, but attention still needs to be paid.”

QUAKE Moment

I first came across Graham Allcott when as a non-Muslim he tested the effect of Ramadan on productivity. So remembering him whilst reviewing The Productive Muslim I introduced him to our QUAKE Books HQ and he kindly sent me a review copy. Whilst I was very pleased to have the opportunity to review his book, I was almost positive that there was nothing major I could be taught on the art and science of making good use of my time.

And in that lies the sweet irony – making good use of time is completely missing the point because the real question has little to do with time and everything to do with attention. Quite a lot of low hanging fruit was subsequently thrown violently to the ground in the ensuing bookquake… goes back to the old saying of books and covers. Humbling is an understatement.


I no longer check emails, I process them. I focus on attention and have moved from the time paradigm into something better. I don’t have more time. I have less guilt and negative energy. In short, it feels like I just took the brakes off a high speed train and knocked down time management. Thankfully time management didn’t survive the collision, the ninja within me saw to that! I can only wonder what I am capable of now…

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