Alternative to multitasking

John Cox has written an article about a different way to think about [tag]multi-tasking[/tag] our work load.

Since working in parallel is learned behavior brought on by peer pressure, how do we break that habit? Becoming [tag]productive[/tag] is the best way to do it. What will be the hardest habit to break is working in parallel sometimes and working in series in others. In electronics, surprisingly enough, this is called a series / parallel circuit. It has definite current drops over portions of the circuit while constant current across others. More than likely, in some way, this is how we all behave. We try to check our email while in meetings. We try to type while on the phone with another. However, when faced with a large task, we devote all of our time to finishing it, so that we can go back to checking our email and catching that 2 o’clock by the skin of our teeth.

I am going to tell you to stop doing that. Treat everything as you do that big project. Devout time to checking your email and answering it, then stop checking until the next devoted time. If you have a 2 o’clock meeting, devote your energy to making that a successful meeting. Do your job to the best of your abilities for each task that you have. What you will find you are working less, as you are not having to go back and redo the things that you did last week. You will also find that you are setting more accurate priorities based on your capacity, rather than based on your workload.

What is more to say. Doing everything at the same time is not productive. We know that so why are we doing it? Sometimes I get the feeling that showing others that we are a busy man is more important then [tag]quality[/tag].
[tags]coaching [/tags]

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