We live in an age of e-mail, texts, Facebook, TV, YouTube, Twitter, not to mention human interactions, all of which can distract us when we have a task at hand. One study has shown that our concentration in the workplace is interrupted--or we interrupt it ourselves--approximately every three minutes. Once thrown off track, it can take some 23 minutes to return to the original task (to read the Wall Street Journal article click here). The end result is that it is increasingly difficult to do our best work, whether at the office or at home. There are several thought leaders who have been writing about work-life in the digital work world. Here are a few we follow:
Worker Interruption--Why It Matters? When Gloria Mark, Professor of Informatics at the University of California, Irvine first came to the United States, she was stunned by the amount of multi-tasking that she saw. Since then, she has refined her thinking and says, some interruptions are not so bad. Others are deadly, figuratively speaking. READ MORE
Setting Boundaries to Improve Productivity. Jim Ware, a former Harvard Business School professor and founder of The Future of Work...Unlimited, regularly comments on the new work-life paradigm. In a recent article, he writes "Yes, it's nice, and sometimes even refreshing, to jump from one topic or task to another, but it can also be incredibly stressful; and, as we are beginning to understand, not particularly productive." He offers a solution (three actually):
• turn off your email and phone periodically,
• stop work at a regular hour each day,
• and make appointments with yourself, and stick to them.
To read the full article click here.
Life Interrupted. It's not just the quality of your work that matters, but the quality of life. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has created an interactive online index that compares well-being across countries based on 11 topics deemed essential in terms of quality of life. See what matters to Americans. READ MORE
Want to Get Into the Weeds? Then Read On. Why has work-life balance become an important topic for research and policy in some countries? What are its practical implications and how does the concept work in different cultures? These research studies by David E. Guest, outline the causes, nature and consequences of a more or less acceptable work-life balance. READ MORE
Cross-Cultural Workplace Differences. Imagine a Chinese manager starting a company in a Western country. He decides to structure the company according to traditional Chinese hierarchy, implements Chinese leadership philosophy and in addition insists on everyone speaking Chinese. How successful do you think he would be? READ MORE
Managing Work and Disciplining Children. After a long day at the office, it may seem easier to let your child do whatever he or she wants to do to avoid conflict. It might also be easier to clamp down on your child to free up your evening. Regardless of what's easier, finding a balance between your work priorities and your parenting responsibilities is important and deserves the right amount of attention. READ MORE
Prevent Misunderstandings on Your Team. When working with others, you're likely to encounter people from different backgrounds with various levels of experience and education. In addition, each person also brings his or her own unique personality to a group. When joining all these differences together, you need to learn how to handle the inevitable misunderstandings and miscommunication that can come from people’s diversity. Follow the tips below to learn how you can enhance your communication skills. READ MORE
Be Assertive, Not Agressive at Work. Are you reluctant to speak up when you're being treated unfairly at work? You don't have to suffer in silence. You can learn how to assert yourself without jeopardizing your job. READ MORE
• Why a Simple Phrase Can Save Your Relationship. Learn More
• How Confident Are You? Men tend to overestimate their abilities by some 30% according to a Columbia Business School study. By comparison, women tend to underestimate their abilities and it is holding them back. Many psychologists believe that, on balance, a bit of over-confidence in life is better than a bit of under-confidence because it propels us to try things, to take action and to live a more fulfilled life. Take the Confidence Code Quiz
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