Time-boxing your way to quick decisions

Fri, Aug 24, 2007

Simplicity Rules

Here’s an idea that will help you save everybody’s time by applying constraints. Crunching your own time is easy. Just have a POWER HOUR, Four Day Work Week, or create a Seven Day Product.

To save others time, try time-boxing:

Time-boxing is “the setting of artificial time constraints for tasks like brainstorming and issue resolution. The objective is to cut down on exhaustive consideration of endless possibilities. With pressure to stay focused and disciplined, we can reduce the amount of time it takes to reach consensus.”

This idea comes from Ryan Freitas in an article comparing designers and chefs. For all four kitchen analogies, read the three page article Cooking Lessons for Designers (PDF 850K).

2 Comments For This Post

  1. Heumann Says:

    This is handy on a micro-scale for coding, especially when pairing. When we’re trying to find a solution to something, it’s nice to say, “we’re going to work on a solution to this for X minutes, and if haven’t got it figured out by then, we can revisit if it’s important enough to take this much time.”


  2. Jaered Says:

    The power hour is priceless. I’ve even used it in non-Adam’s office situations. Did you use power hour to write this article?

    I bet this one was the “7 day project”

2 Trackbacks For This Post

  1. Simplicity Rules » 60 second Deadlines Says:

    […] As long-time readers know, I love time-boxing tricks: POWER HOUR, 4 day work week, 7 day product. Working within artificial constraints can make things easier on you and simpler for your users/customers. […]

  2. Use Time Boxing to attack your tasks and projects | At Your Service Cincinnati, Ltd. Says:

    […] Time-boxing Your Way to Quick Decisions […]

Leave a Reply