Thank you to everyone who took the time to reply to my survey. The results will truly help me shape how I try to meet your organization needs, personally and professionally.

As you can tell by the chart, the #1 answer (by a huge margin) was interruptions.  Honestly, that comes as no surprise to me because that is what I hear in every single GO System workshop, during our discussion on workplace productivity killers.

Let me share these 3 ideas to address interruptions.  As always, if you try one of them, please let me know how it works out for you!

1. Remove the interruptions that you cause to yourself!  Stop reading your email as soon as it comes in.  In fact, turn OFF the alert that tells you that you a new email.  (If you’re not sure how to this in Outlook, let me know.  I can send you the steps!)  And schedule some portion of your day when you let your phone go to voicemail.  No, I didn’t say push it to voicemail all day, every day.  Just do it for a portion of your day when you need to work on that #1 priority.

2. Remember that you “teach what you allow”.  If you continue to allow interruptions, you will continue to be interrupted.  Come up with a script that you can use to help you politely re-direct the interrupter.  I recommend even practicing it with a close colleague so you get comfortable saying it!

3. If you are in leadership in your organization, seriously give some thought to creating an organization mandated “Interruption Free Zone”.  A block of time, perhaps once a week, where everyone in the organization is forbidden from interrupting others.

As you consider the above ideas, let me further motivate you with this statistic:

Office distractions eat up 2.1 hours a day for the average worker. (Costing approximately $28 billion a year in the United States alone)

~ According to 2007 study by Basex, a New York Research Firm.

A Thought to Ponder…
Your IQ falls 10 points when you’re fielding constant e-mails, text messages, and calls.  The same loss you’d experience if you missed an entire night’s sleep and more than double the 4-point loss you’d have after smoking marijuana.

~According to a study from the Institute of Psychiatry at the University of London