Monday, July 22, 2013

TED Tuesday: Where Real Work Happens

How many of you think that your place of work is where you feel the most creative and productive?

Nobody? Yeah me either.

The conversation today is about why we can't get real work done at work.

This is something that plagues me daily. If I was in a closed room, a music playlist already set for me, unlimited bottled water and some amazing fresh and healthy snacks - I truly think I'd be the most productive human being alive.

Reality? I work in an open-space environment and share about 60 square feet with 12 people and NO walls. Is a wall too much to ask for?

But seriously, people in the corporate world know the two most common killers of productivity very well. They're M&M's... Managers and Meetings. Thankfully for me, I have an amazing manager that isn't a helicopter dad and let's me and my co-workers run our own show. But meetings, interruptions and being accountable for any and every conversation in earshot can get incredibly exhausting.

Everyday (including yesterday) I'm at the office from 6am to 6pm and honestly my most productive hours are 6-8am and 4-6pm. This shouldn't be the case.

Those hours are my best and brightest because I'm able to have my headphones completely over my ears, emails aren't bouncing back and forth yet and there's so much more concentration to knock out the daily work. Once other people start showing up, I have to either take my headphones all the way off or can only have them over one ear when just in case somebody has a question or needs something.

Also in the past two years I've been told to pick up the phone when I need someone to do something for me but I agree with Jason Fried in the TED Talk below - a phone call in the middle of some serious brain waves can completely derail productivity. For me, a phone ringing makes me instantly sigh and worry about how long I'm going to be tied up on the line. Send me an email or an instant message and allow me to respond on my own time, I promise I'll get back to you!

Where I work, we have a beautiful campus complete with cafeterias, fitness centers, a hair and nail salon, a daycare and a beautiful running track where us employees can truly stay the entire day and love every minute of it. Those amenities are amazing and I need to take more advantage of them, but feel like my entire day is shot the minute the first person (after me) walks into the office.

What do you think, how can you make your place of work more productive and allow you to get actual work done during your assigned work hours?

And p.s. I don't have much time for it in my day job but I agree with Jason Fried that interacting with today's modern forms of Social Media at work IS equivalent to a smoke break you've never been able to take advantage of. 

Enjoy today's TED Talk!

[ted id=1014]

heart JE


Marisa @ Uproot from Oregon said...

Your work environment is truly amazing- I hope you can get out and enjoy the amenities that you have at some point! I agree through- when I get in at 7:30, I am not disturbed until at least 9:30 and the quiet is great!!

brooke lyn said...

too bad you can't take your comp out to the lake and work with the ducks!

Rachel Sedaker said...

This is spot on. I'm glad I'm not the only one who hates phone calls! Today I was swamped as soon as I walked into my office, and when I got an early phone call to work on something that I knew would take a long time, I kindly asked her to call me back in the afternoon so that I could catch up and gain some ground in my office. It's so hard to be problem-solving and get a phone call right in the middle of trying to work something out. I am all about the email.

That really sucks that you lose such a chunk of your work day. I hope it won't always be that way!

Rachel Sedaker said...

p.s. I noticed my face in your sidebar- thanks, chica! You make a girl feel special :)

Rachel Sedaker said...

P.P.S. I stared at Anderson Cooper for a good minute because he was too hilarious.

pechluck (@pechluck) said...

I just don't answer my phone. Everyone has learned to leave me a voicemail, or for goodness sake send me an email or IM me. They get a better answer than if I have to respond on the fly over the phone too!

Jessi said...

That's the way to go!!