Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Productivity

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Friday 9th March 2012

  • Your Brain on Multitasking

    by Adam Gazzaley, Peter Bregman, Rachel Emma Silverman and David Meyer

    We all have a zillion tasks that need to be done now. Does multitasking help you work more efficiently and productively? Or does it allow you to do lots of things poorly? Is it better to focus on one task at a time and then move on quickly to the next? What exactly does multitasking do to our brains? Do gender or age make a difference when it comes to multitasking? A panel of the country's top experts on multitasking – neuroscientists, psychologists and a time-management pro – provide the latest findings on how to work more effectively while juggling multiple activities.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Friday 9th March

    In Brazos, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • A Crash Course in Becoming SuperBetter

    by Jane McGonigal

    In 2009, a mild traumatic brain injury changed the way that game designer Jane McGonigal thought about everything -- literally. She spent a year recovering -- struggling to think clearly, be physically active, and find a new sense of purpose. Her journey back to health led her to invent a new form of game design, aimed at having a measurable positive impact on players' real lives, and fused with scientific research at every level. In this talk, you'll see the first results of that process: a game called SuperBetter. You'll hear about the game's first clinical trials, and get a crash course in getting SuperBetter yourself: Find out how to turn weak social ties into allies. Learn how to experience "gain without pain" (or what scientists call "post-ecstatic growth"). Discover the secrets of "Lazy Exercise" and "Ninja Weight Loss". Find out what a two-minute "Future Boost" is, and why it's the most important thing you can do each week for your physical and mental health. From the mind of a game designer comes a radically disruptive model for integrating breakthrough science into our daily lives.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Friday 9th March

    In Exhibit Hall 5, Austin Convention Center

Saturday 10th March 2012

  • Emotional Equations to Connect with Your Customers

    by Chip Conley

    Chip Conley is the founder and was the CEO of America's second largest boutique hotel company. Initially, he thought he needed to be superhuman to be successful, but after two dozen years as CEO, he realized that he just needed to be a super human to create the habitat for success that arose at Joie de Vivre Hospitality. Using iconic psychology theories from Abraham Maslow (PEAK) and Viktor Frankl (Emotional Equations), Chip wrote a couple of best-selling books dedicated to helping business leaders understand how to be more emotionally intelligent in the workplace. Using a series of equations he's created with psychologist and mathematicians, Chip will help you understand the emotional building blocks that create anxiety, disappointment, joy, authenticity, and wisdom. Perfect for anyone wanting to understand themselves, their fellow employees, and their customers.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Ballroom EF, Austin Convention Center

  • Best Practices for Supervising Millennials

    by Jennifer Selke and Betsy Flanagan

    This new group of workers, raised with technology and praise, brings a new set of expectations and demands. From leveraging interns and volunteers, to hiring younger workers, learning how to leaded and manage this generation effectively for increased productivity and retention is good business sense. Learn why this generation is unique, what research says about their workplace needs and what you can do to get the most out of their tenure in your organization.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Rio Grande Ballroom, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Sunday 11th March 2012

  • The Making of the Modern Office

    by Jennifer Crystal, Dan Patterson, DeeAnna McPherson and Emily Peters

    In the capital of the latest tech boom, developers work late into the night creating the next big thing. But they take office culture just as seriously, fueling behavior that is reaching a level of froth not seen in a decade. Some web startups are partying like it's 1999. Companies say the fierce competition for talent among startups has necessitated extraordinary perks meant to attract and retain employees. But what makes startups a great place to work? Are they things like creative benefits, core values, philanthropy and dogs? This session is focused on creating uniquely successful and fun working environments with disruptive leaders from cleantech, healthcare, and enterprise tech startups.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Brazos, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff

    by Dinah Sanders

    Let go of everything that doesn't make your life awesome! With three key principles and numerous practical tips, Discardia helps you solve specific issues, carve away the nonsense of physical objects, habits, or emotional baggage, and uncover what brings you joy. This SXSW reading from Dinah Sanders' new book Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff will feature staying on target, little decisions, and big priorities. Maintaining focus on what you most want to achieve in the face of a world of distractions is hard, but you can do it – even when you don't always have anyone above you helping to maintain that big picture perspective. Come hear about techniques which can help you in your work—whether you're part of a team or working on your own. Learn how to make your hour-to-hour decisions serve your longer-term priorities.

    At 3:30pm to 3:50pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

  • 4-Hour Work Week Is BS: Truths of Working Smarter

    by Georgia Collins, Kevin Purdy, Doug Marinaro, Kate North and Keith Perske

    Work is everywhere. In the office, on a plane, in your car, at Peet's Coffee down the street. It's virtually inescapable. And while everyone would love to believe the 4-Hour Work Week is possible, is this the reality in today's market? Can you successfully manage and execute multiple projects within a global ecosystem with a team that has several, if not all, workers contributing remotely? Let's have a frank conversation with today's industry pioneers and thought leaders, shedding new light on how we work. With mobile devices within hand's reach at all times, there's truly no excuse or escape -- something early adopters know all too well, but the mainstream is quickly discovering as well. Here, each of the parties will discuss truths they've learned about what it really means to work smarter, and evaluate and discuss some of the false sentiments floating around like needing to "meet" more and the amount of time a brainstorm should (in truth) last — in the end, sharing the worklife heuristics they've acquired and learned over the years and that make all the difference in how they operate in their day-to-day lives.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Salon FG, Hilton Austin Downtown

  • Open Innovation Mixer

    Join TopCoder as we toast Open Innovation, global communities, and productivity in the 21st century. Plus a competition and prizes!

    At 9:00pm to 11:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Lanai

Monday 12th March 2012

  • How to Remember Anything: A Teach Yourself Guide

    by Mark Channon

    "How to Remember Anything" shows how a radically improved memory can add real value in life and in business and can help build your career. Mark Channon, Actor, Hypnotherapist, Product Manager and author of Teach Yourself How to Remember Anything, will take you on a whirlwind tour of the memory techniques inside How to Remember Anything. Guiding you through a set of key examples on how to remember names, books, presentations and more. Mark was one of the first Grand Masters of Memory in the world and creator of BBC's Monkhouses Memory Masters.

    At 11:00am to 11:20am, Monday 12th March

    In Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Startup Balance: Being Awesome Outside the Office

    by Ankit Shah

    The startup scene preaches hustle more than anything. It's all fun and great. You have to make sacrifices, yes. It's risky, yes. You're bound for failure, yes. It's freaking awesome while you're doing it, yes.

    Then you spend time with your friends and you have nothing to talk about except your work.

    Then you forget to call mom to tell her you love her.

    Then you play tennis and realize that you suck and can't last for more than 30 minutes because you are totally out of shape.

    Then you realize you're not the same awesome person you were before the amazing, amazing startup you're working on took over.

    It's kinda like spending all your time with a new girlfriend. Your friends are concerned you're changing. Startups can often become unhealthy relationships, but it's important to stay focused while managing the rest of your life too. It's hard, but there's nothing more important for your sanity.

    Let's talk a bit about sanity.

    At 11:30am to 11:45am, Monday 12th March

    In Room 10AB, Austin Convention Center

Tuesday 13th March 2012

  • Your Best Just Got Better

    by Jason Womack

    Understanding the fundamentals of workflow and the principles of human performance enable entrepreneurs with the tools and the processes to get more of their work done, on time, with fewer resources and with less stress. Learn what top performers know, do and say about professional productivity and effective leadership. If there were just a handful of secrets to being more purposeful, productive and profitable this year, when would you want to know them? Tomorrow? Next month? How about right now? As an entrepreneur your work is always "right there." On the job or off, while you're commuting or while you're out to dinner with clients, your mind wanders over your to-dos. The solution: Call it all work. This session is about "the psychology, sociology and technology" of productivity. You will learn how to get more done and done faster by conquering the three channels affecting your productivity:

    At 11:30am to 11:50am, Tuesday 13th March

    In Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • The Future of Work and the Free Radical

    by Althea Erickson, Josh Rubin, Scott Belsky, Benjamin Dyett and Richard Schatzberger

    How we work is changing. But where we work isn’t.

    Over the last ten years a new way of working has emerged, along with some people who live it every day. They’re available 24/7. They network endlessly, and then plug their skills into others’ in surprising combinations. They choose when and how they do what they do, on their terms. They don’t want job security – they want career fluidity. We call them free radicals. And they’re creating the future of work.

    But when they look for a place to do all that, the options are weirdly outdated: office, home, or on the go – say, a café. Those are actually poor choices. Offices mean fixed cost and daily routine. Home is isolated and full of distractions. And cafés get old after the second latté.

    Be transported by this panel of experts into the future of work, as they walk you through their vision of the ideal work experience for free radicals just like you.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Brazos, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center