Interruptions destroy productivity

by | Jun/9/2010

We live in this modern world of e-mail, text messages, and social media and the constant interruptions can be devastating.

When CNN ran the story, Study tracks effects of interruptions on doctors, I immediately thought about the effects of interruptions on the “doctors” who take care of your IT—your IT professionals!

If you have seen me speak, or experienced an IT Vital Systems Review audit, you have heard my soap box spiel about how IT professionals all need at least one 45 minute period of uninterrupted time each day to accomplish tasks. My preference is that they get even more than one of those periods.

When solving an IT related issue, planning the next upgrade, or focusing on some other IT related process, it is crucial for the IT professional to be balancing multiple ideas and multiple subjects around in their brain simultaneously. One unnecessary interruption can throw the IT professional back to “square one” again in a nanosecond.

The CNN article says doctors did not even return to almost 20% of the tasks they were doing when interrupted.

Interruptions are dangerous to medical professionals in hospitals, pilots in aircraft, and IT professionals in your organization.

Save them time, and yourself money, by allowing them to work quietly from time to time.  If you have them on staff, IT developers are the same way. Writing code is a thought intensive process.

I was interrupted twice while writing this article. How many times were you interrupted while reading it?

For that matter, some of the CEO’s and other key executives that read these blog postings can benefit from some uninterrupted time as well!  Please post your thoughts on this blog.