DailyDirt: Improving Productivity
from the urls-we-dig-up dept
There are only so many hours in a day. It’d be great to be able to get more done in less time, and people are always looking for easy (or any!) solutions that might boost their productivity. Some folks try polyphasic sleep schedules to try to get more waking hours, but that’s cheating. (Sleeping less is probably not healthy, either.) Here are just a few other stories about changes that you can try to get more things done.
- Coffitivity claims that ambient noise (like the kind from a local coffee shop) can increase creativity with “enough noise to work.” Rooms that are too quiet can be distracting, and obviously, rooms that are too loud can impair mental focus and concentration — and there’s some research to back it up. [url]
- Pixar’s headquarters is designed with all the bathrooms in the atrium — so that employees from different departments might have more opportunities to mingle. Hopefully, though, people aren’t discussing their work projects while taking care of other business…. [url]
- The Hawthorne Effect was named after a set of studies at the Hawthorne plant in the 1920s — where increased productivity was observed when the factory lights were brightened OR darkened. Basically, the workers were more productive, not because of the lighting changes, but because they realized their bosses were checking on them. (The dramatic effect of changing the lighting was apparently fictional, but the Hawthorne Effect is still a phenomenon that researchers try to account for when designing psychological studies.) [url]
If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.
Filed Under: creativity, design, distractions, employees, hawthorne effect, management, noise, productivity, work
Companies: coffitivity, pixar
Comments on “DailyDirt: Improving Productivity”
Who watching these comments...?
maybe we’ll be more productive if we know we’re being watched.
Re: Who watching these comments...?
Was that the point of the whole NSA Surveillance leak?
Basically, the workers were more productive, not because of the lighting changes, but because they realized their bosses were checking on them.
The way I heard it, it was because they thought somebody cared about them.
The noise thing is very relative. My company changed the layouts from small workplaces with up to 6 people to an all-in-one environment layout. While this MAY be beneficial to larger departments it makes the whole environment very noisy simply because people need to use the phone for professional stuff or have conversations with co-workers either professionally motivated or not. My productivity fell after the change and I already had a conversation with my boss on that. I often go to any vacant meeting room to do what I need in the silence but these are not available often.
They also went against all the trends and removed any and all opportunities of socialization. That’s not particularly problematic at first glance and it’s balanced a bit by the fact that the workstations are in a single environment now but I believe it has a deterrent effect overall. What I do know is that the levels of depressive people are at an all-time high in the company.
As for the productivity because bosses check on people that’s obvious. We tend to take it easy if there’s no supervision. I take it is some very common human trait.