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  • « Businesspeople would be better off if they did less and thought more »

    tags: work workduration overwork management coordination timemanagement timewaste meetings pressure creativity

    • Yet the biggest problem in the business world is not too little but too much€”too many distractions and interruptions, too many things done for the sake of form, and altogether too much busy-ness. The Dutch seem to believe that an excess of meetings is the biggest devourer of time: they talk of vergaderziekte, “meeting sickness”. However, a study last year by the McKinsey Global Institute suggests that it is e-mails: it found that highly skilled office workers spend more than a quarter of each working day writing and responding to them.
    • Americans now toil for eight-and-a-half hours a week more than they did in 1979
    • 80% of respondents continue to work after leaving the office, 69% cannot go to bed without checking their inbox and 38% routinely check their work e-mails at the dinner table.
    • workers are generally more creative on low-pressure days than on high-pressure days
    • The most obvious beneficiaries of leaning back would be creative workers€”the very people who are supposed to be at the heart of the modern economy.
    • One of the secrets of productivity is to have a very big waste-paper basket to take care of all invitations such as yours
    • Indeed, creative people may be at their most productive when, to the manager’s untutored eye, they appear to be doing nothing.
    • But there is certainly a case for doing a lot less€”for rationing e-mail, cutting back on meetings and getting rid of a few overzealous bosses. Leaning in has been producing negative returns for some time now. It is time to try the far more radical strategy of leaning back.

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