Online Newsletter for Call Center Personnel
Rosanne D'Ausilio, Ph.D. Editor and Publisher
Volume V, Issue 10

Date: October 1, 2004 - Do You Multitask? Part I

Does this ever happen to you? Do you feel overworked? Overwhelmed? Overtired? Most of us are busier than ever: We're doing our jobs--plus sometimes the jobs of one or two gone-but-not-replaced colleagues--and doing it all with less support.

"Do more with less." Is the unforgiving mantra of business in our industry today. Make more decisions, launch more innovations--get more stuff done--with fewer people and less resources. Cell phones, laptops, PDAs, pagers all beeping, ringing, flashing making demands on our time and our attention. How do we do it? We become very good at multitasking. We do it everywhere--largely because of technology. We can check pagers and even answer cell phones on the golf course (or in my case, the tennis courts!)

Does this mean you have less time to do real work as more time is spent on task work-answering messages, shuffling papers? Do you manage to stay sane in the face of these crazy demands?

A growing body of scientific research shows that multitasking can actually make you less efficient. Trying to do two or three things at once or in quick succession can take longer overall than doing them one at a time, and may leave you with reduced brainpower to perform each task.

Research shows that multitasking increases stress, diminishes perceived control, and may cause physical discomfort such as stomach aches or headaches not to mention shoddy work, mismanaged time, rote solutions, and forgetfulness.

Have you ever noticed that as you are working on one task, thoughts about another creep into your consciousness? Taken further, car crashes, kitchen fires, forgotten children, near misses in the skies, and other dangers of inattention.

Next month we'll talk about how our brains do it as well as suggested solutions.

QUOTE OF THE MONTH: To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; to leave the world a little better; whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is the meaning of success." Ralph Waldo Emerson

2004 Human Technologies Global, Inc. All rights reserved

Click here to go back to archive of newsletters.