Office workers get distracted every three minutes
I'll be short, I know you have work to do (and tweets to check and a texts to respond to and co-workers to gossip with and...).
I just want to distract you for a moment with this crazy statistic on office distractions reported by Rachel Emma Silverman at The Wall Street Journal:
Office workers are interrupted—or self-interrupt—roughly every three minutes, academic studies have found, with numerous distractions coming in both digital and human forms. Once thrown off track, it can take some 23 minutes for a worker to return to the original task, says Gloria Mark, a professor of informatics at the University of California, Irvine, who studies digital distraction.
Wow! Someone else can do the math on how much actual work gets done in a day. It's not a lot.
In her brilliantly titled piece, "Here's Why You Won't Finish This Article," Silverman points out a few initiatives companies are taking to limit office distractions. Here they are in super short list form:
- Limiting or banning internal emails
- Reducing the number of projects an employee can work on
- Using the telephone (instead of email) for complex or urgent conversations
- Implementing a no-device policy for meetings
- Devoting specific time as "think time" while limiting things like email and meeting unless urgent
Now, back to (three more minutes of) work!
Workplace Distractions: Here's Why You Won't Finish This Article [Wall Street Journal]