One definition of information is the degree of uncertainty reduction.
How much information do you need to gather to achieve an acceptable confidence level that you have sufficient information to make a judgment or decision?
Herb Simon made a distinction between optimization and satisfaction. Similarly, an inverted U curve for amount of information gathered suggests that too much information creates an excessive cognitive processing load. Of course, other factors enter into your information gathering behavior, e.g., economic loss function for an incorrect judgment or decision, position of the person(s) in the organization to whom this recommendation is sent, diagnosticity of the information content.
Do you ask yourself explicitly if you have or have not gathered a sufficient amount of valuable information or are you compulsively attempting to conduct an exhaustive search?
Don’t permit this cause for information overload to be self-inflicted.
Marty Bariff, IORG Treasurer posting blogs during May.
It’s the last day of IORGLiveMonth today, a great experience for me, one month where I could look into Information Overload and having to talk about it connected several dots, opened my mind to some of the little details that matter, some of the little behavioral patterns that we all do and observe, that start in good will but eventually provide more troubles than benefits.
The third week passed and I knew it would bring some controversial topics and new perspectives on what can cause information overload and how to reduce it.
Once we recognize the existence of information overload and we attribute to it several unpleasant consequences like stress, lack of focus, time waste, low productivity, miscommunication, bad collaboration…, we cannot avoid to focus on some good practices to reduce it. And so we go with e-mail best practices, appropriate tools to be used, hints and tips about how to cooperate together more fruitfully or automated business solutions to save our time.
The second week of #IORGLiveMonth just finished a great journey for me so far in sharing my experiences and reflections with all of you and at the same time building a video library or hints and tips that will be accessible by everyone for the time to come.
I don’t expect to bring absolute truths or solutions on the table but my observations are true and my proposed tips and behavioral changes are tested, first of all, on myself and direct experience. I’d really like to hear your point of view and opinions about it.
In the first week of IORGLiveMonth that you can watch here http://bit.ly/iorglivemonth from Day 1 to 7 you can see as common denominator one basic concept: e-mail is not anymore a necessary tool to do our job.
On the contrary, learning to collaborate using other channels will definitively help us becoming more productive, spending less time and drastically reducing information overload.
It’s been a while I’m not using e-mails, 5 years since July 2013 and even before I started gladly advocating different forms of collaboration to avoid overused channels.
That’s where I got to meet IORG, Nathan Zeldes and all great professionals and researchers that with me share the same disappointment around the way we naturally ended up communicating between each other.
I feel the main driver of it, is a lack of education from our institutions and corporates. Nobody told us that mobile phone notifications were addictive and that our internal chemical reactions (see dopamine) is playing with us in a way that keeps us there, waiting for the next stimulus to come.
When I started working on mitigating Information Overload at Intel, back in the mid-90s, it was all about email overload, and the solutions we worked on then were all about how to send less and better email, sort and process incoming email faster and more sensibly, and – once we figured out the underlying cultural causes – improving norms and expectations within the organization. Nobody even considered Mindfulness then…
Recently I was invited to give a keynote lecture at the XV International Conference on University Libraries in Mexico City last month. The conference was dedicated to the changing role of university libraries, and their place in the United Nations’ “Agenda 2030” program. My lecture, titled “Libraries and Knowledge in the Age of Information Overload”, took a close look at the impact of today’s pervasive state of Information Overload on the academic library, and vice versa. (more…)
IORG, in celebration of Information Overload Day, recently hosted “Overloaded 2017 – An online event of Science, Stories, and Solutions for Managing Information Overload“.
The entire event has been recorded for your viewing pleasure! Enjoy!
The Information Overload Research Group presents:
An online event of Science, Stories, and Solutions for Managing Information Overload
When: October 17th, 2017, 10:00 am – 12:00pm EST
For this year’s “Information Overload Day” on October 17th, the Information Overload Research Group is sponsoring an online Webinar featuring speakers from IBM, Knowmail, and several leading practitioners in the fields of productivity, information overload, and e-mail management.