I wanted to share a couple more links that I enjoyed while I was reading about productivity and best catering to your employees’ potential last night.

I’ve got to say that more and more, I’m finding myself becoming a real proponent of asynchronous communications – maybe it’s because it’s starting to feel like real time communications and this on-demand mentality are kind of, well, exhausting … to the point where it makes me wonder what kinds of changes an organization could see simply by moving away from the constant fire drills and everything is urgent mentality and instead allowed for the time needed for everyone on their teams not only to just breathe, but also to frankly put a little more thought into their decision making process that only not being rushed really allows.

I know that I can definitely think of some examples where I’ve been up super late working on code because I was in the zone, being super productive … only to have to deal with the fallout the next day when someone was looking for me first thing in the morning when they got in and didn’t care that I’d been kicking out some of my best work at 3am while they were long asleep!

Sure, it can be hard to break free from the mindset of “I have a question that’s holding me back and I need it answered now!”, but for me it’s really just a matter of remembering that everyone else has jobs, too, and they’re not typically waiting around for the phone to ring or an IM or email to pop up begging for on call assistance. 😉

It was only a few years ago when I finally decided that I wasn’t always going to answer my phone the moment that it rang, particularly if I was deep in the middle of something. And honestly that came from sitting back and realizing that pretty much 9 times out of 10, they were almost always calls that could either be answered via five minutes of research using tools that my team had already provided, or they were follow-ups to explain an email that they’d just sent to me minutes earlier!

Seriously!

Anywho – here’s some more food for thought on this topic that I found intriguing. Happy reading!

Why Focus Is Your Greatest Competitive Advantage at Work (Plus 19 Ways To Actually Do It)
https://blog.todoist.com/2015/09/01/how-to-focus-better-at-work/

Managing a Remote Team: Best Practices from Doist’s Head of Marketing
https://blog.doist.com/building-and-managing-a-remote-team-2cd0ee4ccb5f

Why We’re Betting Against Real-Time Team Messaging
https://blog.doist.com/why-were-betting-against-real-time-team-messaging-521804a3da09

I stumbled across this post this evening and it really got me thinking about the 40-hour work week that’s expected in America, along with other employment standards that are surprisingly unique to our country, and how businesses might be able to differentiate themselves from the pack by steering away from them…

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/busyness-modern-health-crisis-benjamin-cardullo/

Through working with colleagues from all over the world, I find it really interesting … albeit also a bit disappointing … to learn how much better their workplace customs are than the ones we’ve come to accept here in the States.

Maternity Leave – Because let’s be honest, FMLA isn’t maternity leave … at least not unless you’re able to survive on 60% of your income during it.

Paternity Leave – I really wish this had been a thing when my wife and I were struggling after pregnancy with kids in the NICU…

Vacation Rollover – Here in Florida I’m allowed to rollover 1 week of unused vacation time to the new year, yet my colleagues in India are legally allowed a month of time!

Vacation Days in General – Don’t even get me started on this, comparing US holidays to the rest of the world… 😛

It’s pretty obvious when you look across the board that most US companies subscribe to the mentality of toeing the line instead of really getting creative and offering environments that foster happier employees, and in turn better output, than just the same old, same old that every firm down the street is doing as well.

How would your work week change if you suddenly shifted to a 30-hour work week instead of 40?

Or what if you were allowed to pick whatever hours worked best for you, even if they weren’t necessarily all in a row?

Or what if instead of even having an office at all, you and your colleagues all worked remotely and got together in Paris or London or San Francisco or Australia once a year to get to know each other better and collaborate, like Automattic does?

In a lot of ways, I feel like we’ve become experts at working harder, but not necessarily smarter here, whereas I think an employer would be amazed at what their employees could do if they invested more of their efforts into making the American work culture the envy of the world instead of being those schlups who answer the phones all summer while everyone in Europe is off on holiday for a month at a time!

I know that where I’m at personally in my life, anything that can be done to save me time is a welcome force – whether it’s by shortening my time spent juggling meetings at the office or making sure that I get to actually both take and enjoy the vacation time that I earn each year.

And if we were to really drill down into productive vs unproductive time at work, I’d be willing to bet that giving everyone 10 hours a week back from their daily grind would make the rest of their time spent less burdened by distractions and errands and ultimately result in more output in the quality aspect instead of the current default of the quantity, anyways.

So what if an employer strived to get less hours out of their employees instead of more???

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