Monday, August 20, 2007

More knowledge than you can manage

Even as our time is more restrained, the amount of information coming at us is exploding. It is often said by my clients and colleagues that they have more than 200 emails to be read yet that day.

And we wonder why it is so difficult to get our work done when most of our day time hours are spent in meetings, answering emails and yes even once in a while, the old standby of the telephone call.

Gail Richards, founder of a website and company called, addresses this issue in today's supplement of her enewsletter. She suggests that we do not answer our email first thing in the morning but wait until later in the day between other scheduled tasks. How many of us might have the discipline to do this? Could you wait until mid-day to answer your emails? And, could your culture handle that?

To me this also says we are working most often in a mode of reaction, not action. We begin our day checking emails partly to see what it is we will handle that day. Presumably our day would have been planned somewhat at the end of the day before. But we are now so programmed to immediate reaction, that we check our emails first to see what our day holds in store for us.

And we get taken off track by the new links, the new connections and the new information we find in those notes to us. I rather like Gail's idea to not check email first thing. At least I want to have the experience and to understand what might make that behavior such a challenge. Do we have too much knowledge coming at us at one time? Can we not find the discipline to deal with this?
I'd like to know your thoughts.

1 comment:

Colin Mooney said...

Hi Kathy,

Here is one interesting tool that may help your clients and colleagues in the future. It's called PodSmart.

Kind regards,