Tips for Digital Entrepreneurs: Can Watching TV Increase Productivity?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007 at 6:00pm by Site Administrator

Most of us digital entrepreneurs working at home just can’t get enough productivity tips. One tip I found: Yaro Starak at Entrepreneur’s Journey says don’t watch TV if you want to be a more productive entrepreneur. But Ryan Imel over at Copyblogger found three great writing techniques while watching television.

Fact (at least from my viewpoint): If you are trying to do serious research to write articles for your website/ blog, watching TV at the same time is a really bad idea. I tested this theory from Jan 2005 onwards. (Unfortunately, working from home puts you in the middle of such temptations.)

On the flipside, if your job is blogging about topics being shown on TV, then watching all day will explode your productivity – if you know how to harness this and write while you watch. As well, if you want to learn storytelling techiques, even for blogging or business copywriting, television can also teach you something – provided you’re not watching crap.

On the flipside, if you need to watch something now but also have websites to browse, Chris Garrett has a review of the Read it Later Firefox browser extension. You could surf through sites and save pages for reading later, while simultaneously watching TV on your computer.

You’ll have to decide for yourself whether your type of work can be aided by TV watching or not. For my freelance work it’s a productivity hamper. For my partnered online projects, it’s a near necessity. It’s a dilemma for me.

If you do decide TV-watching will help, here’s my recommended set up:

  1. Have one computer to work on and preferably another with a flat screen to watch on.
  2. Get an external TV capture “card” from your favorite computer accessories or office supply store.
  3. Hook up your TV coaxial cable to the TV box, and the box to your computer (usually with an USB port and cable).
  4. Configure, and you’re ready to go.

If you can’t justify having two computers, run the TV application window in reduced mode instead of full-screen, and type while you watch. Whatever you do, don’t do this with a regular TV set. You want both work screen area and TV screen area to be within your direct and/or peripheral vision – else it really will be a distraction.

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  1. Raj:

    I love it! Figure out a way to get a new 1080i flat panel TV expensed and you’ll have plenty of new friends/readers.

    Anthony Kuhn

    Comment by Anthony Kuhn — November 30, 2007 @ 3:37 am

  2. Hi Anthony. Heh, a great goal – my next one, in fact, as I’m getting involved in film blogging. Who knows :)


    Comment by Raj Dash — December 1, 2007 @ 6:24 pm

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