Get More Done in Less Time with Parkinson's Law

If you give yourself two weeks to complete a task, it will take you...about two weeks.

But what if you gave yourself two days to complete that same task. How long do you think it would take you to get it done?

This question lies at the heart of Parkinson’s Law, a phenomenon first observed by British naval historian, Cyril Parkinson, in an Economist article back in 1955.

He argued that work expands to fill the time available for completion.

In this video, I’ll explore how Parkinson’s Law helps us get more done in less time, and how to use it without compromising the quality of your work.


00:00 Introduction

2:01 Tight deadlines, the flow state, and Ben Mezrich

03:38 Finishing kicks and Alex Hutchinson

5:20 Balancing speed with quality

6:08 Diminishing returns

6:53 Definition of done


1) Finishing kick study:

2) Future Squared podcast:

3) Parkinsons Law in The Economist:



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The WorkFlow podcast is hosted by me, Steve Glaveski. I'm the founder of innovation accelerator, Collective Campus, the author of several books and numerous Harvard Business Review articles on all things productivity, effectiveness, and high-performance at work.

My mission is to help you unlock your potential to do more great #work in far less time, whether you’re working as part of a team or flying solo, and to set you up for a richer life. You will learn how to level up your mindset, develop #leadership skills in business and in your personal life.

I run workshops, webinars, give talks, and deliver coaching for teams of all sizes - from startup to large corporate, and have done so for the like of OzMinerals, OnRunning, Charter Hall, MetLife, Lufthansa, and numerous organizations around the world.