Slow Productivity

The central goal of Slow Productivity is to keep an individual worker’s volume at a sustainable level. This was written in the NewYorker by Cal Newport on January 3, 2022. You can read the article here.

Recent research out of Iceland, for example, had more than twenty-five hundred participants, many of them in desk jobs, try a four-day workweek. The data reveal that these workers felt more energized and less stressed, owing, in part, to increased amounts of time for socializing and hobbies, and more flexibility in tackling domestic chores.

Cal Newport’s above article mentioned this

It’s such an interesting coincidence that the article mentions Slow Work. I am not sure what the journalist Carl Honoré, wrote about Slow work in 2004 is similar to mine. It’s something for you to find out if you are interested.

The issue in this evolution is not how many hours you’re now asked to work but the volume of work you’re assigned at any one time.

He talks about reducing the volume of work rather than the time to work. Reducing to 4 days work week from 5 days will only increase the stress of overload.

I always used to tell my team members don’t rush. Why is there a rush to complete any task? Why most of us are working like we want to quickly tick the box and move one? There are some tasks and decisions that need to be moved swiftly. Does every working hour or our work feel like that? My answer to this is NO.

I am a firm believer that in the world of knowledge work there is a very high opportunity for leverage. Your job is to put the pieces of the puzzle in place that makes it easy for you to grow. You will have your share of setbacks, mistakes and at times failures. That doesn’t mean you should be struggling, frustrated or get angry. There is a systematic way to overcome stress, anxiety and pressure at work.

As a leader and learning from slow productivity here are my 5 insights that each of the leaders can take

  1. Make sure the volume of work is kept under control at all times
  2. Remove all kind of waste work that are not urgent or important
  3. Learn the skill to say NO to the all the loss making urgent tasks
  4. Develop a system to allocate all work and make it automatic
  5. Encourage the team to ask better questions about quality of work

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