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Jump starting a Productive Day and staying on task


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In our never-ending attempt to squeeze more than 24 hours into one day, Leslie Shreve of Productive Day schools Nestor on Taskology and getting work done more efficiently as the kids go back to school and the football games come on the television.


people, calendar, task, productive, email, call, leslie, years, task list, productivity, give, meeting, crab cake, pappas, wife, day, life, 25th anniversary, phone, put


Leslie Shreve, Nestor Aparicio

Nestor Aparicio  00:00


What about w n? S? T Towson, Baltimore and Baltimore positive or positively? Pappas. Glenburnie. We’re up down here. I haven’t had a crab cake yet. They brought me this ahi tuna salad with these noodles. He was unbelievable. I said that I said to the waiter, I said, What should I get should get that and I’m like, Alright, I’m gonna get that. And when I got that I was very, very happy. Our friends were asking global bringing us together, as well as our friends at window nation and the Maryland lottery celebrating 50 years, I’ve given some of these away. If anybody’s one they haven’t told me yet. We’re gonna have some Raven scratch offs to give away, as well as the old throwback wishbone. It is our 25th anniversary here. And we’re celebrating all year long, we’re celebrating 25 years of wacky signs like this. This is number 25. In our stories of glory, you’ll be checking that out right on the front of Baltimore positive. It’s all brought to you by our friends at curio, curio wellness, as well. Leslie Shrieve, somebody I’ve met several times, in networking around Baltimore, there’s not many things that I take more seriously than productivity. Being a small business owner who has celebrated 25 years of having an am radio station, I’ve run this thing in every way possible from a couple of guys starting it out to a bunch of people and $1.4 million payroll and this whole thing, and then my wife got sick. And now I’m sort of like the guy on the porch and animal and as some sort of an independent, as it were, I am 1570. But I’m always trying to get more productive. I Randy would a networking event, you gave me a card, you have this whole shtick within the elevator speech and all that stuff. And I thought, Well, I’m gonna be a wise guy, I’m gonna invite her down because I wanted to have her on all summer. I said, I’m gonna invite you down for school to start. I have this whole thing when football season starts like next week, they after Labor Day, first day back for school used to be it is my first day of football season. And it’s when we put the foot down. And with the Orioles, I have like two feet to put down now. And I need to be more productive. And when I met you, I said I think I’m a pretty together guy. And the first thing and this is you being a school teacher and beat me up. You’re like, and somebody else Jessica valus. Maya, who does my website, she did the 25th anniversary logo that you see here. She says, I’m a zero inbox person. I have zero inbox. And I’m thinking to myself, you’re not me. You know, so you’re you’re getting me to zero inbox. And the you wrote me back sort of flippantly. The last thing in my Texas, I’m not there to make you more productive, necessarily more organized, more organized, more productive. Yeah, that’s it. Yes. Oh, yeah. But organization is the beginning of it’s a

Leslie Shreve  02:37

side benefit. It’s like icing on the cake. It’s part of the process. Alright, so what’s the cake, what’s the recipe is efficiency and productivity, I work with corporate executives and professionals. And I help them become up to 300% more efficient and effective and productive. And as little as four weeks I help them reduce stress by up to 90%, an average 50% for everybody, I help them make more meaningful, powerful progress on the projects and the initiatives that matter the most to them. And when when I do that for my clients, it’s because we’re focusing on task management, time management, and email management.

Nestor Aparicio  03:08

Oh, I’m gonna get a pen.

Leslie Shreve  03:12

Task Manager tasks, time and email, task time and informations built in there to those email


Nestor Aparicio  03:17

would be any communication that will be texted well, over your alto. Yeah, we talked about all of that. Yeah, I mean, I’m sure you meet. Oh, man. It’s been five hours on the phone like we used to, right. I mean, that’s times

Leslie Shreve  03:27

not texting. Yeah. Yeah. It’s like the golf like,

Nestor Aparicio  03:31

I mean, no offense, my friends are classic five, and I said, I had Tom Pierce wanted to kick off the tour, Becca cost us less money. I just, I don’t have five hours to do that. And my wife gets upset with me about movies and stuff. Like, I don’t have two hours. Like this, you know what I mean? I sit and do this with baseball and football, and sometimes with politics, and sometimes, and I love books. I mean, I wrote one, you know, come get one, you know, but like, time is money. It’s time as well, a great equalizer in the human experience it is. It’s what we all have the same of it’s that capital, that we all have the same moment how we use it. Totally. I mean, it’s like an empty seat in the airline. Once it’s gone, it’s gone over with so using it wisely, and it didn’t take my wife’s illness or my mother’s death or, you know, any any event like that, to figure that part of it out. You just know, I try to use my time. I feel like it’s the greatest asset I have. It’s the most valuable asset I have, as well as my energy, my health. So how can I use so when you come up to me at a networking event? And I’m like, oh, man, I’m pretty productive dude, you know, but like I do have some issues. My issues are organizational, my issues, our contact management, technology, digital and the fact and this is something that would be a different vibe that if you if I were your client, I’d be your biggest problem client. 32 years I’ve yelled into this mic 25 years ago in the station as well and access and your chat still might have a hard time I believe in this, but it’s true. We have over 100,000 people that kind of hang on whatever I do, whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, not 100,000 People gonna see this video or hear this piece or be in the car, but just in general, and every one of those people at some point, have elbowed me rubbed up against me had a crab cake, drank a beer, I dated their daughter, I knew their sister, I went to school with them, my son, it’s small tomorrow, right? If and everybody expects to be respected, and I grew up in the era of growing something from nothing. So every email to me was a chance to create a customer and a friend for life build a really and I tried to do that one by one from taking phone calls at the station, all the way through and collecting all these people. So the hardest part is the amount that can come in. Yeah, and I’ll give you a day. That is the is the greatest day of everybody’s year. It’s a birthday, right? My birthday. It is an overwhelming thing on my birthday on Facebook to have 3200 people wish me happy birthday and feel like I really do want to say thank you or create a like or create a touch. And that is a black hole, man. Yeah, I mean that I do October,

Leslie Shreve  06:11


hundreds. I can’t imagine 31

Nestor Aparicio  06:12

You get 400 It takes you three hours. It’s like your wedding day. My wife and I and Facebook. Yeah, my wife and I went home and we had our wedding down here. And then we went home that night. And we went all night through the cards. Yeah. Right. And that’s a birthday on social media. And that doesn’t have anything to do with doing business email, things you have to do client, you have clients, you want to have things you want to do to see. Yeah, but we all get so many hours in the day. Now I’ve gotten around this. I’m a hot yoga guy. I’m going to have our friends from Planet Fitness on next week talk about fitness and getting it all together. Justin’s going to because I’m doing all to get back to doing all that you’re getting real good. I’m getting ready for everything for football season. And since I started doing hot yoga, I’m, I’m sort of a little bit of a maniac. I sleep about four, sometimes five, but rarely. Wow. I would say I would say almost never more than five hours a night. Oh my or six hours. I mean, that would be like, Oh, Dynamo. So I get I give myself three or four more hours a day than most people get right. I do that seven days a week. But let’s say it’s six. So that gives me about 20 to 25 hours a week that I am creative working doing the things that crazy people see me do Clune set this up at Pappas. I can’t imagine if I slept 10 hours a day, how much less life there would be. So you start with a client. So let’s, you’re gonna help me today. All right, so let’s see productive day you can find around on the web. What do you what do you say to me, I think you know my business, I have a radio station. I’m a little more independent. I don’t have an executive assistant I, I am my own entity, right? So you take me in? Do you have to get to know me,

Leslie Shreve  07:56

I have to have a conversation with you first, as I do with all folks who come to me and are interested in wanting to have more time, both professionally and personally at home, you know, to spend with their wives, husbands kids and all that that is a problem, right? They really have their weapon open the laptop after you know dinner or after they put the kids to bed and they’re trying to catch up on email or catch up on tasks and they’re really they’re going from stress to burnout,

Nestor Aparicio  08:21

I would always pray for my school teachers and then I dated one and I live with one I had a roommate who was a school teacher, and I would see the volume


Leslie Shreve  08:27

yeah, having to do all that when really you just need a break

Nestor Aparicio  08:31

at 430 or five in the afternoon. They had to get up at six in the morning. I’m like and then they’re grading papers so their

Leslie Shreve  08:36

personal time is not their personal time so they come to me and say I want to be more effective at work but I also want more time for me so it’s a lot of things for a lot of different people so I asked them first What do you use to keep track of things to do and that’s the one that that gives me all kinds doesn’t shooters watch this wherever they’re putting it so I want to know where they’re putting it so they they bring up everything the old fashioned planner

Nestor Aparicio  08:58


I’m upper levels I’m upper left on my on my screen I have a Word document that is my my god that’s my that’s one of them. Right yeah and then things in my calendar set my people time, time commitment, various color coordinated fine, like this is yellow because it’s we’re doing radio Yes radio

Leslie Shreve  09:17

that’s different. That’s a time commitment. So calendar and time are different in task ology. So a calendar appointment is a literal time commitment, where you’re seeing another person, it’s a call, it’s a meeting a doctor’s appointment or vacation time is it’s literally a commitment. Whereas a task and a lot of my clients do this before we work together. They’re checking tasks on their calendar all over the place. But the problem with that is that it’s going to take up a 30 minute spot. It might be just called Bob Smith.

Nestor Aparicio  09:44

I have learned that I put time when I strategize. These are the 10 things I have to

Leslie Shreve  09:49

do. But we don’t want to clutter up the calendar with those because they’re not the calendar this is on my


Nestor Aparicio  09:53

to do. List. 30 minute thing and I’m always idle black hole Thanks. So something’s a two hour project, I’ll probably call it a three hour project, which I can serve, right, which is good. That’s where I need to be because I don’t want to handle short shrift myself with that.

Leslie Shreve  10:08

But the issue was the teeny tiny task like calling Bob Smith might only take two minutes, and they might get voicemail. So now they’ve just sucked up a 30 minutes based on their calendar for something that wasn’t specific to that time of day, which is something they needed to do. But because they were afraid to forget it, they threw it on the calendar. So let’s say you do that 10 Different times a day all through the week. It’s sloppy, because let’s say you call Leslie I want you to be on my radio program. And I’m looking at my calendar, and it’s filled with real time commitments, and a gazillion tasks to stop and interpret my calendar.

Nestor Aparicio  10:38

This first problem Boy, that you know, what the most common problem you see

Leslie Shreve  10:41


it well, no, it’s one of the many, but it’s it’s a time waster right there to have to interpret your calendar and go okay, which ones are real time commitments, and which ones are movable because they’re just tasks I love to do on a task list. calendar appointments belong on a calendar. So the task list and task ology which is my system is going to be an entire inventory of everything you need to do, we’re going to get rid of the big pads, little pads, spiral pads, notepads, post it notes, whiteboards, Excel spreadsheets, word documents, one list, because until you have that one list, there’s no way for you to a lack of awareness, and B, compare and contrast the many things on your plate and make decisions about how to spend your time, right, that’s the priority, what moves to the front what can be and if you can’t see it all, then they got things, you know, scrolling away and falling off your radar. And that’s when expensive things can slip through the cracks like opportunities, revenue, progress, you name it,

Nestor Aparicio  11:31

I would say this. So I run the company for a long time. And I’ve dealt with all kinds of people male, female, black, white, young, old, East West, you know, like through the course of this, I was always marveled at like, you know, the calendar, like, how can you not, I would meet people and say, like, you don’t know what you’re doing next Tuesday is a problem like that. Like, I don’t know why I’m like, you know,

Leslie Shreve  11:56

I’ve run into people where they’re using their outlook calendar very much. And I say very much. Oh, my goodness, how do you know where to be? Right? So let’s go fix that. Let’s

Nestor Aparicio  12:04

go old school here. Because I shared this picture. I don’t know, if you follow me on social media. I shared it the other day. And it kind of happened. And this gives me a chance to promote my 25th anniversary. So we’re doing this 25th anniversary, it’s our stories of glory. And we’re it’s a little spin on the Memorial Stadium time will not dim the glory of your deeds, because our audience is really kind of what made this happen. So I’m going through the top 25 of all time, and somebody said to me the night that Deion Sanders came to party hill station with you with Kordell Stewart, that was a top 25 night I’m like, it might be let me have the tape of it. I have some pictures. And I’m like when exactly was that night. And I remember he played two seasons oh four no five. So you know what I did in the in the old era. And you’re gonna be really proud of me because I would be a good student for less extremely productive day. I found literally every one of my my date minders from my youth. So this is literally if you look at it, this is every deal binder in my history. So that’s 2008 Six, and I put them all in order. So they started in 1988. So from the time I was 20 years old, because I was juggling concert Geddy Lee’s calling me to be interviewed, I’m at a hockey game, I got a girl I’m trying to make time with I’m a parent, my parents are both alive. You know, like all of this is going on 1988 89 And you can see 8990 9091 9192 That little spiral thin like that the pages ripped out. I went back to 93. And then these were the best. These were the weeklies, and these were literally the size of my phone. It literally would, it’s identical, and it would fit in the ass pocket of my Levi’s in Dundalk in the 90s. Right. And like, in the old days, you’d have to comb like Fonzie at the skate land. My date minders, each one of these for 20 years of my life. So you can see from 1989 There’s Oh, 56789. And you can see it ends at 10. Now you know why it ended at 10 because Google came along and the iPhone came along. That’s right. And I remembered in 2010, and I had a big cup bigger company than eight, nine and 10 at a bigger company. I had a general manager who was in his 60s, he had an assistant who was in her 30s I had a bunch of, of old sports fan guys, many are on the fan these days. That worked for me. And I called everybody into the basement, the radio station, I said, we’re going digital. Yeah. And I was always the guy who my partner, Steve Hennessy, thank you to Steve for helping create this 25 years ago, would always say to me get your calendar out. Yeah. So in the 90s we were trying to grow a business. And we had no way really for him to know if two o’clock on Thursday was a good time for me to meet with Miller Lite about $100,000 sponsorship. Yes, right. So he would call me and say get your calendar out. He literally that’s the old days the flip phone, you know the cell one big bat phones. Yes. And he’s Hey, Thursday, two o’clock and I get my month. Yeah, that thing was never last one. As you can see, I never lost them. I misplace them, but it never lost them. But I never wore them out either because they were so important to me. And now every part of my life for all 21 every day of my life, those 21 years is in that box. Yeah. And you’ve just seen and


Leslie Shreve  15:20

now you’re just went digital in 2004. Okay, five,

Nestor Aparicio  15:24

well, I had other people I had to bring in I went I went digital and six, a friend of mine came to my house. And she said to me, you’re one of the smartest people I know you have this business. You’re sort of famous. You got to get an apple. You got to get an Apple computer. It’s gonna change your life. And she brought me this look like a toy. It was little white. She just gone to law school. Yeah, thank you, Meg, hockey mag, she brought it over, she’s like, you’re gonna play with this computer until you’re gonna get up and buy it. And you can afford it to go by and I bought it and that an apple I created wn St. dotnet. That summer of oh six, I saw my life beyond am radio and oh six. I saw that we could be here 25 years later if I did it, right. Yeah. So back to a couple stories. So trying to sit in front of my staff and get them to get a Google calendar so that the old Steve Hennessy could just make an appointment for me and say, Hey, Leslie’s going to be three o’clock on Wednesday, I’m going to put it in your calendar. Or people now like really techie, people have to go in and sign up on their little thing for my half an hour block time, I’m offended by that, by the way, like I shouldn’t be. But people

Leslie Shreve  16:28

put things on your calendar or that time. That’s what happens in corporate all the time is you can’t permission you, well, it’s an invite, you can turn it down. But a lot of people don’t they just accept it. And I tried to help them understand how they can negotiate that, because everybody’s stealing their time. People keep chucking stuff on their calendar. And since I work in Microsoft Outlook, and everybody’s on Microsoft Outlook, generally in corporate, a few have turned over to Google, but most of them are on Microsoft, people are just stealing their time, right and left because they’re they’re filling up every single vampire. It’s awful. And I tell them, you don’t have to accept it, you can weigh it, it depends on who it is to take into consideration that

Nestor Aparicio  17:05


you’re in control. I own my company. So I have a different level of, of what I’m willing to accept and not accept where the bar is, if you’re mad at me, then be mad at me. But like, there’s only one

Leslie Shreve  17:16

man, right? The executives I work with, they have control of their time. But they’re I think, too, too often they’re accepting what everybody’s just throwing on their calendar, right? I’m saying, Hey, Mr. or Mrs. C level executives, you don’t have to do that you can move things around. Some automatically know that and some feel like they need permission from me or somebody else.

Nestor Aparicio  17:34

From a productivity standpoint, I would say the most amount of time in my life I’ve wasted had been on meetings with people who that would just show up unproductive meetings. Yeah, I mean, I’m trying to make them productive. In a in a, if I wrote an email, that was a two page email to 15 employees at any point, two of them may read it all the way through 10 of them was discarded. Three of them would maybe get whatever they were interested in, in the email, not what I needed to have for the company, which was just, I mean, I’ll sit her pitch about running. Like, that’s why I don’t have that anyone to pay. And then you would have a meeting and they all didn’t like it anyway, yeah, she sat in there. And they’re kind of looking at you like, Oh, it’s a meeting with the boss. I hated all that race coming along. Well, he’ll tell him. But the productivity of that that felt like more wasted time than anything is trying to happen convey. And I help them with that, too. I can, like my wife has been remote for a long time and her and she’s a worker. So my wife’s a worker, she loves being remote. She’s a little bit isolated. That’s good. That’s good. But the whole notion of like getting called into meetings in a traditional 1980s office setting happens, wow, wasted calories.

Leslie Shreve  18:44

Right, right. Because people don’t have agendas. They don’t have minutes, they don’t have what they’re going to talk about. They don’t even give the materials out until the person gets everybody gets to the meeting. And that’s what’s most unproductive. If you want a decision to be made at that meeting, you give them the materials upfront ahead of time, have them bring the decision to the meeting, right? So you’re not sitting there spinning your wheels talking about it, given the tape, read it now read it before we get to the meat, get to the meeting and discuss your thoughts then that way it’s much more productive. So


Nestor Aparicio  19:09

I get these, these old minders are trying to find this Deion Sanders name. And it led me to take a picture in it. This is 3d I did this Saturday. So I took these pictures Saturday, it was like serendipity that you were coming to me that I would have and I would show you what what organization looked like for me that the basis of the foundation of I’ve always had my ish together to some degree but always felt like I’m one you away from kicking the ball like just talk a lot of people right,

Leslie Shreve  19:43

right. And of course in corporate in the same similar sense. People have said to me, gosh, I had it together in the early part of my career, and then I have to change promotion. More pizza, later Furman. Or Yeah, well, that too. And then now they’re like, I just it’s falling apart. To Help, Help Help,

Nestor Aparicio  20:01

so when you find them, and the whole spectrum, you’ll find somebody like me who thinks I’m better than I am. Right? I mean, we’ll come in like that or, but just, I would think you probably find way Messier, small business owners who are still taking orders at the bar on the yellow and, and pink, you know, paper, you know, the wood moves that carbon paper, like, like, literally, I still see some I’m from Dundalk. I mean, I go around, I see places that are cash only sometimes, you know, there are some old school places, right, the digital part for businesses to have everything automated, whether it’s payroll where, you know, a bill is important. I mean, you’re my partner, Scott, who takes care all my I mean, all of our all my clients pay every month, thank God, I don’t chase them for a check, like the old way of doing things. But there are still executives, you find that I’m sure using those calendars or doing Yeah, really, you have to bring them along

Leslie Shreve  21:04


a little bit. And I and 99% of my clients are in corporate. So I’m not working with a lot of small business owners machine, or they’re much bigger companies that they’re bringing in a million or two or something. So usually, it’s the folks in corporate who are stuck with Microsoft Outlook. And they might even hate it. But I love it. I’ve been working with it for 30 years. And I know a lot of people do, it’s okay. But But what they’ve got is a situation that’s spinning out of control whether or not they have a team or an assistant or anything. And it doesn’t even matter if they have an assistant, a lot of times, people will say, just the opposite, which is oh, I don’t need to be you know, I don’t need productivity, I have an assistant and I go Hold on timeout. There are things that only you can do that you can’t do everything they can, they can be more productive, too. But let’s say they’re rockin and rollin. But that executive, he can’t give all his emails to her or him as they know you’ve got your own CEO stuff to do. So let’s still talk because you still have the emails that only you can reply to the time that you need to strategize and the time that you need to do only the tasks that you can do. So I don’t say all that to the person who says to Me, I don’t really need any productivity. I just, I walk away.

Nestor Aparicio  22:11

Okay, task time. And what was the third one task time and email and email or communication? Let’s say Right, sure. So when you find someone, you really are Dr. Melfi a little bit, right. Like you’re kind of like you, right? Like, it’s sort of like, tell me how you do this again. And then I actually use five people that are really good at it.

Leslie Shreve  22:31

I don’t know, I just dive in and fix them because we don’t look back to how they got there or what they’re doing. They’ll tell me that on the first 45 minute call, which is really just a discovery call. So I can ask them all these questions. What are you using to keep track of things to do how many emails you’re in your inbox? How much more time would you like to have and all the things that are happening now what’s what’s not working? And then if they sign on at that point, then the first appointment we have which is all virtual, is just starting the fix job. I start building task ology because that’s the system I created and trademarked. And so that’s basically how it works. Word I do. It’s trademarked. That’s

Nestor Aparicio  23:03

pretty good. Word, maybe with that probably should have given you five cents for


Leslie Shreve  23:08

a productive day and task allergy. Biology. Yeah, so that’s the system. It’s based in Outlook. So task, ology is not software. It’s a methodology for the technology. So we’re using the Outlook task list, but not the default screens, I change it around, I simplify it. I make it easy for people. And then it’s easy for them to build it with everything they need to do have to do want to do even dream of doing but not all in one day. Rollin once a process, it’s an inventory. But there is a day to day plan and how to prioritize from day to day and plan and how to handle pending tasks and things you’re waiting for from other people ideas, delegated tasks, you name it, it’s all in there. And that way, then they have Mission Control. It’s one dashboard I never

Nestor Aparicio  23:47

understood. And if Mr. Stayton were here, he laughed at me, but I never understood why it was school when I was in school, right? Like going to history class and going to English class, you know, go seven periods in middle school where you change teachers and situations at all. Boy, it’s like incredible preparation for real life with homework, preparedness, brushing your teeth, eating lunch, yes, moving from this thing to vannamei.

Leslie Shreve  24:14

And the kids that don’t get that, like if they don’t, if it doesn’t click how much of a struggle it is for them to put together as a 30 year old or to get through the work world in the 20 in their 20s You know, it’s hard. I don’t I don’t work with them. But you know, I might meet them later when they’re 40 or 50. Why? Oh, can

Nestor Aparicio  24:32


I go back to this? I go back to this like I had, you know, some college educated staff but certainly nobody went to high school and had structure and had parents through my employees like 50 or 60 people I ever employed. have few of them. I could in their real life when they came to me in whatever the 1990s I’ve done this for 30 years. They came to me and I have a first meeting with them and say we’ll get your calendar out there like I don’t have a calendar. That’s and I like And I’m like, I don’t mean that on a work level like, you, you don’t really don’t know, like, what you have tickets for a concert for or for like, any sort of kids, or like an engagement with a friend, meet them drunk, right? Just the calendar to see when the ravens are playing, if that’s what’s important to you know, whatever it is, I just sort of like,

Leslie Shreve  25:21

trying to keep it up in their head. And that’s falling apart. It’s sort of

Nestor Aparicio  25:24

like somebody who’s spending their day not knowing what time of the day it is, how do you make a meeting, right? How do you ever Connect? That’s

Leslie Shreve  25:29

when things slip through the cracks? Nestor? Yeah, that’s when they slip through the cracks. They’re trying to keep a lot in their head. And as we get older, and you and I are in our 50s It doesn’t work that well. It doesn’t work.


Nestor Aparicio  25:41

I got it all in my head. Yeah,

Leslie Shreve  25:42

kind of all of my I’ve had people say that to me before they learn to ask ology I have too much in my head. And they can’t, it’s so stressful. That is

Nestor Aparicio  25:50

I can’t imagine being that person and then finding someone like you, and giving myself up to Oh, being organized, wow, I can get more stuff done. I mean, I’m organized, I just have too much stuff.

Leslie Shreve  26:03


And I’m gonna help them be more productive. And then being organized is going to be that sidetrack. Imagine holding everything in your head. And you’re trying to have a conversation with one of your colleagues or one of your team members. I’ve had people tell me that they have so much trouble focusing on what that person is saying, because they’re trying to run this reel in their head of all the things they’re trying so hard not to forget. And then they’re not giving their all to that conversation. Right? And people can tell. And then they walk away from that and go, Okay, what did I just talk about?

Nestor Aparicio  26:31

Well, the worst part for me is I tried to stay sure I do radio, you know, three to five hours a day for five days a week. I’ve been doing it for 32 years, right? I took some years off, but 25 of the 32 years I do this every day in my life, is you’ll see I don’t have notes. Right. Like, I never have notes. Yeah. And it would Dr. Mohler, batshit. I mean, like, you school teacher, and like, he would send me all this prep stuff for Stuart Pittman, that I would barely, I mean, a terrible, I’m not a bad student. But for what I do here, the if I needed notes for you, I’d have no take, you know, if Westmore were here, or if Calvary didn’t matter, like I may have a few things to write down. I actually almost wrote things down for Ray because rates were like memories that he and I have, but I brought some of this stuff to sort of trigger along. Yeah, he’s here. Look, he’s arrived. There he is. Yeah, not everybody needs that. No. gummies for you before to show. All right. I’m on now that he’s here. Some people call him a robo call. Yeah. So finding people who haven’t even had a calendar, you’re not at that level, you’re finding people that are

Leslie Shreve  27:42

they’ve got outlook, they might be using the calendar, they’re not using the task list. And if they are using it, they’re using it wrong. And they’re

Nestor Aparicio  27:48

not that they’re like, during a meeting to you, getting to you, I can do better. I admitted that to you when I met you and they


Leslie Shreve  27:55

say I want to be better. They’re saying I can’t do this anymore. Okay, I can’t. So it’s a pain. It’s awful. It’s awful. Because they’re buried in hundreds of emails that are now scrolling off the screen. And with it go the tasks, reminders, opportunities, networking, events, information, questions, requests, they’re all scrolling. There’s

Nestor Aparicio  28:12

nothing worse than overwhelm. And I was feeling that this weekend. And honestly, I think of you like you’re a little bit of an angel in my life since I met you put your cards on my desk. And I told you that when I met Yeah, because like it is at the top of my mind to not waste time I have too much to do and too much ambition, right? Yeah, where I am in my life right now to to make change. And for anybody that follows me knows my passion and all that. And I’m, I’m sort of feeling my mojo again, and a lot of ways, Steve shot he’ll learn that next week when he reads but in finding time, and I said to you when I met you, and I’ll give you a chance to tell me about this because I have these apps on my phone because I downloaded them, like everybody Christmas time I get extra time. first of the year, I’m gonna change things, you know, and I downloaded Remember The Milk RTM and I downloaded a couple of these other little apps that are apps designed to make you more productive. Right, right. And maybe it would work for me and my wife if I had three kids to have the list of like, getting cheese at the wise when um, you know not, don’t forget the olives or whatever, right? But what you’re doing, it’s a different level

Leslie Shreve  29:19

alleviates that. A lot of people come to me and they say, Oh, I’ve got this cool app for my task. So this new email app on my phone or I’ve got this for to do’s my legal pad, my planner like they’re they’re trying to find the solutions, but they’ve made a hobby out of it. They’ve made a hobby of looking for tips, tricks, tactics, shortcuts, apps and hacks and task ology takes that all away takes that off their shoulders and off their plate. And I give them a system that includes everything. So they don’t have to do that anymore, because it synchronizes with your iPhone. The tasks automatically synchronize with to dues on the iPhone and then usually because they’re on a company server, everything else they’ve got on their phone already. Calendar, email notes and contacts. So and I’m not an IT person.

Nestor Aparicio  29:59


I do not get it. Making a to do list.

Leslie Shreve  30:01

You can but I can give them the list that they should be using here. Make it simple. Keep it easy. It doesn’t have to have color categories, bells, whistles and all this stuff that people get lost in. When they get things on their phone. They get lost in the bells and whistles. I’ve had so many people say that to me, Leslie, I wasn’t working on my work. I was working on setting up the system. Right on. It’s awful. And this takes all that away

Nestor Aparicio  30:25

like once a week and this one was taught me this weekend because I’m in this I’m in a little bit of work slowdown this week. I’m not doing a whole lot on Labor Day. Yeah, I’m really gearing up for next week. Next Tuesday is the beginning of school. This is a little bit of like a holiday and holiday from his work, right vacations, vacation, holidays, Christmas. Always Christmas because everything shuts down and I can get ready for the next Yes, uninterrupted. Totally uninterrupted. Nobody’s bothering me. There’s Nobody’s expecting a meeting. Right? Nobody’s expecting me to be anywhere to be great. I don’t have to shave any of that. So this week is that week for me? Yeah. And on Saturday morning, I sat down and said, Alright, here’s everything I have to get done by next Monday night. But by Labor Day night when I go to bed, and we’re now six days left for the time. That’s how I’m about five days into my productivity. I’m kicking ass right now less, right? I am. And what I did was I on Saturday morning, and I do this periodically, when I’m ready to rev up and say, All right, I put all my tasks in one place. i This isn’t the top, this is in the middle. This is at the end. This is what I’m going to do on Saturday. This is what I’m going to do on Sunday. And then on Monday, I go in, and I’m like, didn’t get that done. Didn’t get that done, but I got all these other things done. And then they moved to the Monday list. And it’ll get you know, it’s just about time that I couldn’t because I’m over ambitious, right? I just an overachiever and totally, but I’m in the middle of this. And I even said to my wife this morning, and I haven’t felt great the last couple days. But I said I just haven’t had a lot of energy. Yeah. And I said I’m I’m, I’m where I need to be. And here’s my little here’s my gift to myself. stiction. REO Speedwagon are playing at the Allentown fairgrounds tomorrow night, Wednesday night. And I said, if I can get everything done by two o’clock, I get that you’re there for our line. Yeah, I’m gonna take 10 hours gonna go rock and roll on the combat combat

Leslie Shreve  32:16

dive back in, you know, you know, and you have a lot more control over your time than the typical corporate exec course, because they have between 30 and 130 tasks on their task list once we build it, not all for today, this week or this month, mind you, because we talked about that, but short term, long term, no, just it’s all in their plan. And we get away from that notion of short term and long term. Why is that bad because every single project task needs to be a teeny, tiny action step, we break it all down. So I have five characteristics that make a task a task, and you’d be surprised how many people are filling up their word document or their legal pad or their planner with a jumble of stuff. It’s like a hodgepodge of big things, little things, Project small tasks, multi step tasks, watch


Nestor Aparicio  32:59

these verbs all mixed call do, right, I don’t just put names,

Leslie Shreve  33:04

right. And that can be problematic. So the way I teach the creation of the task, it’s surprising that folks don’t know how to create a task for action to actually get it done. So we’re breaking it down, I have a formula for it. And I teach everybody how to do that. So every single thing on their list is the first action step so that when they get there, they know exactly what they’re going to do. There’s no hesitation, and no procrastination. It’s not a project. It’s the first step to get going. Yeah. And so that’s why it’s not long term, short term anymore. Do they need to get it started? Maybe in December, sure. But we’re not classifying it. That’s another bell and whistle that’s holding people up. They go on, I want to think about that. That’s long term. No, no, too much time could go by and you could get to next May and completely forget that you needed to get this started in January. So we’re gonna get that action step on the task list so that you know exactly you’ve already thought it through. And you’d be surprised every single task and task ology starts with a verb. Can’t leave it out to Oh, call create, review, revise, consider send. No, it’s not do it’s specific to what they’re trying to accomplish. So that’s part of the formula, but it’s really specific. There’s a lot to it, but it’s simple. It’s been called simple, logical and easy to use already feel like a bad student. No, not at all. It’s got to have a verb though. You need something to incite action, and it shows you you’ve already thought it through.

Nestor Aparicio  34:19

And Leslie Shrieve is a productive day task. ology I am having compelling conversations with her off the air, I figured we’d have one on the air, at least so you said to me, you’re not going to make people more organized, you’re going to make them more productive

Leslie Shreve  34:34


and, and being organized is a byproduct of that it will happen but that’s not the end all be all. What would

Nestor Aparicio  34:40

you say to somebody out here who can’t afford you doesn’t need you like that on a corporate level. They’re just a mom at home or they’re just somebody that works that goes to a job where they don’t then feel like they have to have a calendar, my book. Yeah, because I think everybody could benefit by having a better strategy. Whether it’s just to feel good or have fun or UFC things you want to see or wherever that bucket list starts with loser a bucket list. This is the stuff I want to do in my life right?

Leslie Shreve  35:08

It’s your why like, why do you want to achieve Why do you want to be more productive? What are you why are you here? Are you spinning your

Nestor Aparicio  35:14

wheels while didn’t want to waste them will lay and then line a burn down? So I don’t know. I


Leslie Shreve  35:18

gotta find out, right?

Nestor Aparicio  35:19

I gotta find a new place I’m afraid of. I’m afraid of what I thought I found it now. Maybe it’s Dundalk. I’m not sure. Maybe it’s Glenburnie. We’re down here. Glen Burnie, brought to you by our friends at the Maryland lottery. Leslie is our guest here. We’re celebrating 25 years Ray Bachman is gonna come on here and probably embarrass me which I love. That’s why I invited him quite frankly. I brought some old pictures of Ray and I and some old signs. We’re celebrating 25 years of doing what we’re doing in our friends and when their nation also celebrating with 10% off through Labor Day. 866 90 nation I get to wear the Fun Bucket hat. I have some old that’s Miller Lite. Yeah, it’s a good look. It’s in the summer look for me feels like I feels like when I wear this. I should have the white suntan lotion on my nose. Sitting on a dock fishing somewhere. Well, yeah, read the book, maybe on your productivity. All of all of it also brought to you by friends at Rascon. Global Leonard as it’s given me this is this is productive. This is. This is a crab mallet that has a beer as a beer. Oh, I see. So yes. I like that. Well, you got to have strategy in Atlanta Raskin. His strategy is the American dream and investing money and making sure that you’re doing it wisely and using your time and money. Well, so this little, you know, by the way, Pappas is his favorite crabcakes. So my

Leslie Shreve  36:32

mind really is your joy. It is I just go to the one in Cockeysville All right, yeah.

Nestor Aparicio  36:36


So, and I’ve done many shows and cockys will Mike bordick A bunch of folks. So we’re here, we’ve been up in Bel Air because they just open and Parkfields will be my next threatened Justin on that. But I remember this was a Bennigan’s and as I told the county executive, we always hated coming in Roanoke County, because we had to go to the DMV to get our license. Anybody it’s our age, right? Like, like, oh, man, holy

Leslie Shreve  36:58

day, Westminster. Where I grew up in Baltimore County. Yeah,

Nestor Aparicio  37:03

we had to come across the Key Bridge and you know, everybody neighborhood always I gotta go to the GMP on Monday

Leslie Shreve  37:08

like to go to any of them. And that’s productivity. It’s it’s a time sock, while the


Nestor Aparicio  37:13

right I mean, digital has like made everything a lot that oh, it has. I mean, whether it’s buying tickets, buying, going to airplanes, buying things, ordering things,

Leslie Shreve  37:23

but it’s how you use it at work that matters the most. Yeah, I’m a little addicted

Nestor Aparicio  37:27

to buying Pacifica belt buckles right now. It’s cost me some productivity of my time. But everybody’s got their thing. It’s my job. It’s my hobby at this point. Everybody how they can find you your book and all that good stuff. If they want to learn more or less he’s been a good sport to come out and production well

Leslie Shreve  37:40


thank you for inviting me. It’s been fun. You can find me at productive And the book is task ology how to unleash the power of your most productive workday that is on our website, productive buys a book, they can buy my book, if they want to deep dive, then let’s have a chat. DM me, follow me on LinkedIn, you know, connect with me send me an email see

Nestor Aparicio  38:00

events all the time with with corporate leaders. And I don’t know if I can afford you or need you that Well, I think I could. I certainly could be better you don’t have

Leslie Shreve  38:08

Microsoft Outlook. So we’re not a good fit. Yeah, you gotta hate my Google.

Nestor Aparicio  38:13

So the story about it. I rarely see my wife in tears or near tears from work. Oh, okay. Yeah. So you know, my wife and a 32 year project engineer, Verizon, she’s got a beautiful career. She’s brilliant. She’s beautiful. She’s healthy. But she’s working from home now and we have her all set up we’re not doing a kitchen table like we were during the play. So she’s all comfortable. And she gets up every day coffee the cat feed the birds like all that love come sits down and attend. After eight I went in and she was like, manic and I’m like, What’s up? She’s like, my files my files they’re all gone. Everything’s gone everything since March every single thing I’ve done and it’s a server issue thing get beat the company shores right. It’s Mike looked at him like it’s Microsoft boys. Oh, yeah.


Leslie Shreve  39:00

Well, task ologies task allergy you know, we’re just using it as a platform and most of the time it works Hey, and we’re so

Nestor Aparicio  39:06

mysterious woman in my life Leslie with this task ology productivity thing and celebrating

Leslie Shreve  39:11

20 years. Well,

Nestor Aparicio  39:13


I showed you my calendars from the night I had the

Leslie Shreve  39:17

Franklin Covey planner up until 2003

Nestor Aparicio  39:19

You were probably all hoovered out before any of this start lugging that Blackberry.

Leslie Shreve  39:24

Yeah, yeah, of course, I had a Blackberry. Yeah, and I hold on to my technology too long. Like the phones. I gotta upgrade. I just did my


Nestor Aparicio  39:34

issue. And if anybody out there is listening, and you can help me I need a nerd. And in your space cable nerd, no, I can’t believe I do. I need a Google Apple nerd. I need someone to pull in all of these email addresses, contacts, and whatever the systems that right. Apple identifies a contact versus what Verizon does. Many years ago pain point is kind of like arrays in my phone from 1996 on a flip phone that I had to put digits in, it’s in some calendar that Verizon used to use with Bell Atlantic 20 years ago and it’s not integrated yeah so I pull up an app on my apple to get his Tech’s won’t show up. My son has a non Verizon he’s got one of those banded phone. Nobody T Mobile without orders and it doesn’t show up

Leslie Shreve  40:31

yet. Yours is a special projects crew. I don’t even get into that depth. I don’t know if I would call Microsoft nerd. I thought you were that person. I wish I could be but I’m sorry. You gotta be connected. Apple Apple nerd, please be on the lookout for that. Sure. I will. I will keep my ears open

Nestor Aparicio  40:47

and productive day go find her task ology. And you know, everybody can be a little bit more productive. So I’m just trying to do that have a little bit of fun. It’s all brought to you by our friends at the Maryland lottery. You’re gonna get number 35 For Adley rutschman Or is that Mike Messina? I’m not sure it is. The lottery sponsors this week of winners way all the time. John Martin will be here. Big appreciation for them or friends or window nation have had the fun hat on and Rascon global as well. We’re at Pappas in Glen. Burnie come on down have a crab cake. Get that crazy. Ah, he tried to salad thing was delicious. It’s her favorite crab cake. Let raskins fade and the

Leslie Shreve  41:20


desserts here oh my goodness. Happiness is great, man.

Nestor Aparicio  41:23

I’m so pleased that they’re sponsoring us now. So big appreciation that and I had been the the Glen Burnie location they sell lottery tickets in the back to So Ray Bachman will be here. This is going to be kind of like the living legend coming back up. I found all of our old pictures. This guy and I have been together for 30 years across state lines. doing illegal things. We do anything illegal probably once or twice. We did illegal things. I mean lives the Taliban was blessed century doesn’t even matter. You know, Ray Bachman will be here. Our longtime executive producer. We’re at Pappus stay with us. It’s It’s our 25th anniversary. We’re having fun. Happy Labor Day.

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