203: The Unexpected, yet Scientific, Secrets of Perfect Timing with Dan Pink

Dan Pink, Bestselling Author

Dan Pink and Bill Ringle discuss how entrepreneurs can organize their days to be the most productive and efficient. When it comes to success, the important question to ask is when.

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Interview Insights

Top Takeaways from this Interview

  • Why writing a book proposal can help you decide whether or not you want to write the book that you thought you were going to write.
  • The best time to do something depends on what it is you’re doing. For example, going to the doctor’s office in the afternoon is more dangerous than going during the morning.
  • How beginnings, midpoints, and endings affect us, and how to recognize temporal landmarks to use them for our benefit.
  • How to recognize the Larks, Owls. and Middles when coming up with time-based directives for your team.
  • Breaks make us better, certain kinds of breaks make us so much better.

Read the Show Notes from this Episode

  • 1:48 The writer who inspired Dan the most when he was growing up.
  • 2:30 “As a kid, I spent a lot of time in libraries, and being in libraries gave me the sense that the world was far bigger than the town I grew up in.”
  • 2:43 “The institution of a public library shaped me more than anything else?”
  • 3:13 “I want to do something that I’m curious about.”
  • 4:29 “There have been times when I’ve written a book proposal only to discover that I don’t want to write the book.”
  • 5:16 How Dan came to write the book When.
  • 6:14 “There were all these things that I had in my work and life that I was approaching in a very sloppy guesswork, patchwork way, and I found that frustrating.”
  • 7:49 Why going to the doctor’s office in the afternoon is more dangerous than going in the morning.”
  • 8:31 “Our brain power does not stay static over the day.”
  • 8:46 “The best time to do something depends on what you are doing.”
  • 9:15 The best times of day to exercise according to the exerciser’s goals.
  • 11:12 The Fresh Start Effect: “There are certain dates of the year that researchers call temporal landmarks; they stand out in time the way landmarks stand out in space.”
  • 12:01 “We relegate our imperfect selves to the past, and open up a fresh ledger on our new and better selves.” 13:18 “Time of day accounts for 20% of the variance regarding how people perform on brain-oriented workplace tasks.”
  • 14:53 “Most of us move through the day in three stages: a peak, a trough, a recovery.”
  • 15:24 The best time of day for analytic work is during our peak; insight work is during our recovery period, and the trough time is better for the administrative stuff.
  • 16:27 The perfect way to plan and implement a hiring process according to the time of day.
  • 19:03 How to take morning people and night owls into account when it comes to the time-based directives.
  • 20:54 Why structured interview processes are far better than unstructured processes.
  • 23:01 “Diurnal processes are pretty ferocious opponents.”
  • 23:44 “We’ve gotten breaks largely wrong in America.”
  • 24:36 “We need to think of breaks as part of our performance and not a deviation from our performance. Professionals take breaks; amateurs don’t take breaks.”
  • 25:39 “The highest performers take more breaks.”
  • 27:15 “The most effective naps are very short: 10-15 minutes tops.”
  • 28:58 The Lightning Round

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Expert Bio

Daniel H. Pink is the author of six books — including his newest, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing, which has spent four months on the New York Times bestseller list. His other books include the long-running New York Times bestseller A Whole New Mind and the #1 New York Times bestsellers Drive and To Sell is Human. His books have won multiple awards and have been translated into 39 languages. He lives in Washington, DC, with his wife and their three children.

For more about Dan Pink, visit his website.

Contact Info for Dan Pink

  • Travels from: Washington, DC

Published by Dan Pink

When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing by Dan Pink

Other Resources Mentioned During the Interview

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