Overloaded inboxes can wait – it’s time for my productivity gut check for 2018. Here’s why we shouldn’t wait for our employers to seize the day, and why the digital skills gap factors in.
Most companies are better at giving employees access to the information superhighway than at teaching them how to drive. This is starting to change. Management consultants have spotted an opportunity. Derek Dean and Caroline Webb of McKinsey urge businesses to embrace three principles to deal with data overload: find time to focus, filter out noise and forget about work when you can.
If you’re going to achieve growth in the knowledge economy, your employees need to be able to quickly find people inside and outside the company whose expertise can help them solve critical business problems. That takes a highly effective communication tool.
Oh, we already have that, you might say: email.
Attention spans have become shorter than at any time in human history. As a result, entrepreneurs who wish to get their message out and catch the eye of would-be customers must be more creative than ever before. There is just too much information out there, some of which pushes your product or service out of your customers’ view. Attention Deficit Disorder is more than a clinical diagnosis; it’s now the very definition of our daily existence. We don’t have enough attention to adequately give to the numerous and multiplying shiny objects vying for our finite attention. So, how can you cut through the fog and get the attention of the right people at the right time to make a sale? Here are four approaches to consider.
Does the endless stream of articles telling you of new and alarming risks to your health have you feeling anxious? Consider just a few of the latest: Common pain relievers raise your risk for heart attacks. Sitting too much can make you more likely to develop cancer. Drinking even one soda per day boosts your chance of diabetes.
Medical research is essential for helping us learn more about the likelihood of disease and how to reduce those risks. But with so much health and medical news blaring at us from websites, newspapers, TV, Twitter, and our doctors, it’s almost impossible to make sense of it all. And sometimes the risks are overdramatized or misstated—or don’t apply to all of us. As a result, you may experience needless anxiety, undergo procedures or take medications you don’t need, and skip steps that would really benefit you.
When was the last time software billed as a “communication platform” actually made you more productive? If we measure productivity by the number of emails we get in our inbox every day, we’re doing great. If we measure it by the number of tweets we receive, the Facebook posts we read and the meetings we attend, wow, are we productive.
We’re all worried about the costs of information overload and we typically associate these problems with new digital technologies. But actually information overload has very deep roots: signs of information overload were present already in the accumulation of manuscript texts in pre-modern cultures and were further accelerated by the introduction of printing (in the 15th century in the case of Europe).
As data become cheaper and more widely available, more app developers are finding creative ways to take advantage of the information overload. (more…)
GOOGLE “information overload” and you are immediately overloaded with information: more than 7m hits in 0.05 seconds. Some of this information is interesting: for example, that the phrase “information overload” was popularised by Alvin Toffler in 1970. Some of it is mere noise: obscure companies promoting their services and even more obscure bloggers sounding off. The overall impression is at once overwhelming and confusing.