I am not a guy who enjoys business books. I’ve read three in six months, and they all have far too many overlapping ideas. This is one of those three, but somehow it felt different than the others. The subtitle is “How the Gospel Transforms the Way You Get Things Done.” At first, I thought it was an odd focus, but now that I’ve read it, I see that it makes perfect sense. We are limited in time, so let’s make time count for bigger things.
The main principle I’ve gleaned is this: We are to be productive in order to free up time to serve God and others. I should find ways to improve job performance not to be faster, but to serve better. This is a great distinction to make, and one that Perlman explains quite clearly throughout the book.
This is a great how-to book, but it is more importantly a great why-to book. I want to work smarter, delegate better, include others broader, and think deeper so that I can bring glory to God and to love those around me. I want to focus on the task in front of me without distractions so that I can serve (in my case) students and parents well, but, more importantly, so I can love my wife as Christ loves the church, and be a godly father to my three children. This book is an excellent read because it focuses on the most important elements of my life: Jesus, Kristie, my kids, and the students in my charge (in that order).
One of the most practice portions of this book is his email handling chapter, “How TO Get Your Email to Zero Every Day.” See this chapter in his blog post: http://whatsbestnext.com/2008/11/how-to-get-your-email-inbox-to-zero-every-day/. These principles really helped me take control of my inbox, both at home and at school.
What’s Best Next is a great read to set the priorities in your life back where they belong. It is worthy of a read, and I think this will be one of my top books of the year.