"Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" and "People Don't Actually Read - David Perell"


Hatched by Glasp

Aug 17, 2023

4 min read


"Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" and "People Don't Actually Read - David Perell"

In today's fast-paced world, where time and resources are limited, it is crucial to find efficient ways to complete tasks and achieve goals. Two concepts that align with this mindset are "Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" and the idea that "People Don't Actually Read" as put forth by David Perell. While these may seem like unrelated ideas at first, they actually share a common thread - the importance of maximizing productivity, creativity, and personal growth.

"Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" is a principle commonly discussed in project management and software development. The concept emphasizes the need to prioritize time and budget constraints over expanding the scope of a project. Instead of trying to fit everything into the given timeframe, it is advised to trim down the scope and focus on delivering the most essential features or outcomes. This approach ensures that projects stay on track, deadlines are met, and resources are utilized effectively.

Similarly, in his article, David Perell highlights the fact that people don't actually read as much as we might think. He suggests that a large portion of knowledge is acquired from the experiences and ideas of others, which are then passed down through books, articles, and various forms of media. Perell argues that reading books is a valuable source of inspiration and a way to find good ideas to write about. However, he also notes that a significant portion of these ideas are regurgitated from other sources, while only a small percentage represents original thought.

The connection between these two concepts lies in the idea of maximizing the benefits of limited resources. Just as "Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" advocates for focusing on the most important aspects of a project, reading books sequentially allows us to explore a wide range of ideas and perspectives while recognizing the rarity of groundbreaking insights. By understanding that the majority of knowledge is built upon existing ideas, we can leverage this realization to enhance our own creativity and personal growth.

So, how can we apply these insights to our own lives and work? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Embrace the "Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" mindset: Whether you are working on a project, pursuing personal goals, or managing your time, learn to prioritize and focus on what truly matters. Instead of trying to do it all, identify the most important tasks or objectives and allocate your resources accordingly. This approach will help you stay on track, meet deadlines, and make the most of your available time and energy.
  • 2. Read strategically and thoughtfully: While reading books can provide a wealth of knowledge, it is important to approach it with intentionality. Instead of simply consuming content, make a conscious effort to seek out diverse perspectives, challenging ideas, and new domains of knowledge. Be aware that many ideas are recycled, and focus on extracting the underlying principles and insights that resonate with you. This way, you can build a solid foundation of ideas to draw from when it's time to create or innovate.
  • 3. Cultivate your originality: While it is true that much of our knowledge comes from others, it is crucial to develop our own unique perspective and voice. Building upon existing ideas is a natural part of the creative process, but it's equally important to inject our own insights, experiences, and interpretations into the mix. Challenge yourself to think critically, question assumptions, and make connections between seemingly unrelated concepts. By doing so, you will contribute to the collective knowledge and offer something distinct and valuable to the conversation.

In conclusion, the principles of "Fix Time and Budget, Flex Scope" and the realization that "People Don't Actually Read" share a common theme of maximizing limited resources. By focusing on the most important aspects of a project or idea, and leveraging the knowledge and experiences of others, we can enhance our productivity, creativity, and personal growth. By embracing these concepts and applying the actionable advice provided, you can navigate the challenges of a fast-paced world and make the most of the time and resources available to you.

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