The Problem With Email at Work

And Why Some Companies Ban Email at Work

I have been on a personal productivity "kick" for about the last two years. For several reasons.

1.  Lack of productivity seems to be on the increase. Work habits and a good work ethic is not a given.

2.  I became aware of the statistics about how the use of social media puts us in a constant mode of distraction and having our attention interrupted. This means personal productivity takes a big hit. The Internet has been described as an ecosystem of interruption technology.

3.  I did some reading on multi-tasking and found out there is no such thing. Your brain DOES NOT DO TWO THINGS AT ONCE. What it does do is switch and back and forth between tasks. Every time the brain has to switch, it gets tired. Every distraction and interruption means a switch is taking place.

4.  My own life became busier. I had more significant responsibilities added to my work plate (which was already pretty full). While I had to work more hours to meet the new demands of the work, I had only a limited number of hours to add. What I had to do was figure out how to become more productive, effective and efficient at what I did.

So when I come across articles like this,
Why Your Company Should Ban Email,
they get my attention.

I am not suggesting that we ban email at work (although some other banning of social media could be a very good thing), but I am saying that we need to help everyone on our team understand what email interruptions mean for one's productivity and getting the mission accomplished.

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions International