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Made You Think

Jan 5, 2018

Mise-en-place is not a crazy efficiency program. It is really a way of life for people who value themselves, people, eachother, and the planet.

In this episode of Made You Think, we’re covering the book Everything in Its Place (originally “Work Clean”) by Dan Charnas, and for the first time on the podcast, the author is joining us for the episode! This book is all about the strategies and tools that culinarians often use in their work, and applying these strategies to improve your life and productivity.

We cover a wide range of topics, including:

  • The ten mise-en-place system techniques that you can use to improve your life
  • The correlation between an organized space and an organized mind
  • Using the mise en place system to reduce anxiety, improve work efficiency, and overall quality of life
  • Building inner-discipline and being honest with yourself
  • The importance of actually finishing the tasks that you start on
  • Becoming a better manager and a few of the flaws in companies today

And much more. Please enjoy, and be sure to grab a copy of Everything in Its Place and to check out Nat’s Notes on the book!

If you enjoyed this episode, be sure to check out our episode on How to Think Like Elon Musk, to learn how to emulate Musk’s way of thinking for extreme advantages in life, and our episode on The Goal by Eliyahu M. Goldratt, to learn how to use a simple theory to never stop improving.

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0:00 - Introduction featuring the author himself, Dan Charnas. A bit on what made Dan write the book, how he got into organizational systems, and some background on his life. Also, Dan listing some of the most influential books that he’s read.

7:24 - Dan’s journey to becoming a chef and him describing the importance of mise en place. Also, a bit on applying the powerful principles that chefs live by to other areas of life.

11:30 - The beginning of Dan cotifying mise en place for the first time with Work Clean, some thoughts on how things sometimes need an outside perspective, and a bit on the discipline and commitment that’s required in the culinary world. “There’s a certain level of commitment to reality that culinarians have that I think we miss in the corporate world.”

17:02 - The thirty-minute daily commitment to setting your own mise en place, some discussion on the macro and micro levels of the system outlined in Work Clean, and the importance of having a system that involves both the mind and the body.

20:02 - Using mise en place as an effective anxiety reducing technique, the correlation between an organized space and an organized mind, and a bit on the zen-like aspects of the book.

24:20 - Breaking down the ten ingredients/techniques of mise en place that you can bring together for your own personal system.

27:55 - The main technique of the mise en place system that has positively impacted Dan the most and some discussion on the importance of doing the largest tasks in your day first.

34:58 - Certain things to do watch out for when managing people, some thoughts on management in general, and discussion on implementing systems into large-scale organizations.

42:20 - General discussion on corporate meetings and the flaws of these meetings. Also, a bit on a chef’s heavy responsibilities, finding balance between speed and quality, and improving efficiency within a company. “A meeting is about sharing ideas, resolving conflicts, and unblocking.”

48:48 - Going in depth on the importance of actually finishing your actions. Also, some discussion on taking an intentional break and the need to be honest with yourself about your work. “Ninety percent finished is the same as zero percent finished.”

54:07 - A bit more on having a system for both the body and the mind, and linking the system to your calendar. Actually taking the time to do things and scheduling the time to do them. “This is what I can do today.”

58:14 - Wrap-up, where to find Dan at online, and some closing thoughts.

59:03 - After-thoughts with just Neil and Nat. Some discussion on various products discounted for listeners, diet, health, fasting, and going into ketosis (ketogenic diet). Also, some discussion getting into ketosis and how to minimize the negative effects when transitioning into ketosis.

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Ultimately it is about cultivating our inner-discipline.