Multitasking – Is technology killing your productivity? I think the answer is a resounding yes.
When did multitasking morph in to an acceptable distraction? Multitasking is a good thing, right? I think years ago it was something to strive for, but today it seems that more and more people are taking this to an extreme, which in the end, is having a negative impact on their productivity. Think about it. We all have too many windows and programs running on our computer trying to get as much done as we can in our limited time. The consequence to this is that something gets started and does not get finished because of constant purposeful interruptions. IE: a new email comes in so what do you do? That’s right, you stop working on something and read it. You get a text message, you stop working and answer it. For those of you on Facebook and other social networking sites, you have an even bigger attention span problem. And don’t get me started on twitter.
I’m not talking about situations where more work is being given to you, I’m talking about the way a lot of people work today when they need to get several things accomplished and end up working on them all at once. I’m talking about the endless stream of emails, tweets, and instant messages that do not need to be looked at or addressed in real time but get attention immediately.
Pavlov figured out that animals are motivated by rewards and it can become addicting when the reward is random. This reality has a direct negative impact on how most of us work today since we are bombarded by random rewards and that email that just came in, that text message from someone, than instant message you got.
So how many windows do you have open on your computer? Are any of them distracting you away from getting things done and are they actually making you more productive? Try something new tomorrow and close your email, twitter, Facebook, screen your calls, and turn off any other distractions and see how it impacts your productivity. I double dare you. If you are addicted to the distractions, you will know soon enough and not make it through the day. Let me know how it goes.