I have a friend who drives me nuts. He is focused, ambitious, efficient at every step. He is also massively productive. By his own admission, Dr. Dennis E. Hensley accomplishes the work of three people every day. I think he is being modest.
He drives me nuts because – even though I love to hit the ground running at 5:30 most mornings and cover a lot of profitable business territory each day – he makes me feel downright lazy. (We once decided to co-author a book. Two weeks later, while I was still mulling over my first chapter, his entire manuscript arrived. See why he drives me nuts?)
Dennis, who has been a close friend since 1972, has written dozens of books and thousands of articles; he gives motivational speeches to business groups and universities across the country; and he conceived, created and runs the professional writers program at Taylor University in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Oh, and did I mention that he is one of the foremost Jack London scholars in the world?
To top it off, he is not some stressed out, worn down workaholic whose personal life is out of control. On the contrary, he’s pleasant, friendly and approachable (though he has been known to usher idle time wasters gently out of his office). Plus, he has a well-balanced, wholesome home life. He doesn’t drink, smoke, gamble or whine. He has managed to hang onto the same wonderful wife for more than three decades and, together with Rose, raised two terrific, loving children. He is actively involved in his church, including teaching Sunday school. Did I mention he drives me nuts?
Seriously, Dennis is something of a hero of mine. Years ago, he helped me appreciate the value of time management as both art and science. (“John, did you know that if you started 30 minutes earlier each morning, that would give you three more hours a week for quality work, or 150 more a year, or nearly another whole month?” “No, Dennis, I didn’t know that. Thanks.”)
But what I love most about Dennis is that he isn’t just about putting in hours or even just working hard. He is a master of productivity. He works hard AND he works smart.
As business people, we know how important it is to be motivated and productive. Most of us race the clock every day and know full well that greater productivity is one of the not-so-secret ingredients to greater profits.
The question is how! How do we stay motivated and focused and maxing out our productivity day after day?
In one of his latest books, The Power of Positive Productivity: Accelerate Your Success and Create the Life You Want (Possibility Press), Dennis explains how to become what he calls a “positive producer.” He also distinguishes between working yourself to death and being truly productive.
Part of the answer is his choice of goals. He loves to work, provided that work has some positive purpose. He is motivated because he believes in what he is doing. Simply put, he explains, “I love to accomplish worthwhile goals…. Working simply for the sake of working is a waste of human potential.
“Positive productivity is gratifying,” he writes. “It gives meaning to life, a greater opportunity to serve others, and provides increased security and enjoyment for our families and ourselves.”
Still, when it gets right down to it, Dennis stresses, there is no shortcut that avoids hard work: "The 21st century has provided an array of TV hucksters who sell kits guaranteed to make you an over night millionaire in real estate, pyramid
marketing, E-bay resales, or overseas investing,” Hensley told me recently. “The only people making a dime from these schemes are the charlatans selling the kits. Make no mistake about it, hard work and planning and discipline are still the only ways to succeed in life. And that goes for any century."
If you are like me, you need your motivational batteries charged from time to time. It is for this reason that you might want to put Dennis Hensley’s The Power of Positive Productivity on your must-read list. If nothing else, you’ll understand why this good friend drives me nuts.
Work hard. Make money. Have fun.
— JRIngrisano (The Freestyle Entrepreneur)
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