Am I the only one who’s starting to question the editorial decision-making at Inc.? I’m quite sure they’re lovely people. But you have to wonder when you find things like “The 1 Work Hack That Will Save You 900 Hours a Year“:

During every call or meeting, no matter how short it is, I won’t end the discussion until everyone clearly understands their next steps, and until I’ve actually begun any next steps of my own. In other words: Begin your next steps during a meeting, and you will never have to spend a minute reviewing notes or figuring out what’s next.

Consider the implications:

  • It’s not about knowing, articulating, or merely understanding what the hell you’re doing. No. The real key is actually doing it!
  • The discreet suggestion of 900 hours saved amounts to 37.5 days. That’s 5.3 weeks. It’s like making every year 9.8 percent longer. And with 10 federal holidays in the year, it’s the equivalent of adding almost another one (0.98 of another, to be precise).
  • You don’t have to wait till the meeting is over to start doing whatever it is you’re going to do.
  • You don’t have to worry about pissing off the people who are still participating in the meeting as you ignore them and begin your next steps.

Who’s the target audience for this article? It may be shorter work to determine for whom it’s not intended:

  • Adults: Does anyone beyond training pants need to be told that completing next steps is anything more or less than responsible?
  • Professionals: Does anyone who’s worked in any profession need to be reminded of its duties and obligations?
  • Bureaucrats: Does anyone believe this group might even have been a contender? Fuggedaboudit.

Have we actually regressed to a point at which we’ve come to rely on how-to tips, Top Five lists, best-practice guides, instruction manuals, and expert advice for everything — including the performance of our jobs? Has professional gone the way of active?

Will: Hey, how do I engage in my profession like a professional?
Bill: Didn’t you go to school for that, for cryin’ out loud?

Steve: We can’t be reactive on this. We have to be proactive.
Cleve: Really? What would happen if we were active?

I’m getting scared. I’ve lived long enough, and practiced my profession long enough — nearly 30 years (yes, I did go to school for that) — to believe I have reasonably good ideas of who I am and what I’m doing. Am I misguided? Too hasty? Is 30 years not enough? Are the people who wonder why I drink sincere?

If we’re dumbing down everything to this extent, we’re in deep kimchi, kids.

That hacks me off.

Image by Nemo, courtesy of