JetBlue Tackles Information Overload and Busyness in ‘Humankinda’

5 Tips for a Less Busy and Overloaded Day

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More busy people

More busy people

JetBlue plans an ongoing conversation about humankinda, busyness, and Information Overload and hopes to get people to “self reflect and find their own solutions” while also “acknowledging that they are too busy or overloaded.”

There’s no “quick fix,” Richardson concludes. “There no big solution to this problem.”

Indeed, as I noted in my book, the workday is not unlike the game of Tetris, where the goal is to keep falling blocks from piling up. You barely align one and another is ready to take its place.

There are measures, however, that you can undertake that will lower not only your state of busyness but that of those around you. In the workplace, e-mail is unquestionably the poster child for Information Overload so here are five simple tips which, if followed, will help restore a semblance of work-life balance.

1.) Exercise self-control. For example, don’t e-mail someone and then immediately follow up with an instant message, a phone call, and/or a text (or all three). This only wastes everyone’s time and might even stop the other person from completing a thought in his reply to you.

2.) Work on a “need to know” basis. For every 100 people who are unnecessarily copied on an e-mail, eight hours are lost, according to research we conducted at Basex. Copy only those people who really need the information. Make believe that the “Reply to all” button doesn’t really exist.

3.) Resist the urge to thank people too much. One of the greatest scourges of the workplace would be one-word e-mail messages such as “Great!” or “Thanks!” Nothing says “Information Overload” like interrupting a few dozen or so of your colleagues with this important update.

4.) Avoid combining multiple themes and requests in a single e-mail. Our research showed that most people don’t get past the third sentence, if that far (this explains why you just got a reply asking you about something you clearly covered in paragraph 46 of your last missive).

5.) Finally, don’t get impatient if people don’t respond right away. They may be, you know, busy.

(Photos: Accura Media Group)

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