Technology is a wondrous thing, capable of granting our every wish with a simple query… well, sort of. It depends on how you use it. Today’s technology is capable of expanding our productivity through the roof, or sending it to live in squalor deep in the gutters of the Internet. What can your company do to take advantage of this wondrous innovation, and avoid the pitfalls of wasteful distractions?
Do Technological Distractions Have the Workforce in a Chokehold?
As technology grows more advanced, workers only get more distracted. Screenwriter Bill Oakley sums it up with a little anecdote: “Describing today to someone from 1953: Every 6 seconds all your friends send you a telegram and a brand-new Life magazine is thrown at you.” This, without a doubt, refers to the iron grip which smartphones and social media have on today’s society.
You would think that the immense amount of information thrown at us every day would crush every speck of productivity from the average worker’s bones, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. New studies show that humans are adapting to this information age with surprising resilience, and our minds have transformed into gluttonous consumers of data. No matter how many distractions are thrown at us, we’re able to worm our way to the top of the pile and get the same amount of work done. For some, it’s a survival instinct, but there are always those who can’t keep up.
In Terms of Content Consumption, Clicks Are Deceiving
Just because people are clicking on your website’s articles doesn’t mean they are actually taking the time to read them. According to statistics from a company called Cheatbeat, there’s “no relationship whatsoever between the amount a piece of content is shared and the amount of attention an average reader will give that content.” The company painstakingly muddled through 10,000 articles on social media before coming to this conclusion.
If your business shares content on social media, you’ve probably noticed a similar trend. Facebook might tell you that so many people have seen your post, but when you take a look at your analytics tools, the figures aren’t so positive. Only a fraction of people who see a post on social media will follow through and click on it, let alone read the whole thing. In fact, according to TIME magazine, less than half of people who care enough about the article to click on it will read it. Perhaps this could be a reason why your employees don’t drown in articles they see on social media.
Be Honest: What’s Your Own Attention Span?
All of this information can be overwhelming, but that doesn’t mean that it’s distracting your workers, or that we’re becoming an antisocial race. There’s a famously-old image that sums up the changing times just as well as it did before the digital revolution: a black and white photo of several workers on a bus, sporting the caption, “All of this technology is making us antisocial.” It doesn’t matter if they are taking the time to educate themselves or catch up with the news. Distractions have taken many different shapes and forms, be it a newspaper or a smartphone screaming to have its text messages read.
If you take one thing away from this article, we hope it’s that humans are distraction-prone creatures. Some people just have a much harder time concentrating than others, and these people are known to always find something to do that isn’t what must be done. Folks, we present you with… the procrastinator.
Sate Your Employees’ Thirst for Technology with More Technology
According to the Darwinistic theory of natural selection, only the strong can survive changes to their environment. Those who fail to adjust get left behind. However, just because an employee is addicted to a social media site doesn’t mean that they don’t produce quality work when it matters the most. In order to fight back against technology distractions, one must embrace technology itself. Oh the irony. Yes, society’s addiction to technology can be a cure for the plague of endless distractions.
Protek can provide your business with an enterprise-level content filtering solution that can help keep your team focused on the task at hand, instead of wasting time on social media sites like Facebook, YouTube, and BuzzFeed. You can filter the content that every employee can access on a user-by-user basis. Those who aren’t so easily distracted can be left alone while those who are won’t have any choice but to work.
Content filtering is a powerful tool to combat distractions in the workplace, but naturally it’s not an ultimate solution. The human brain can do incredible things, but distractions are crutches that we must learn to deal with on our own. Given time, employees will get over the information overload and continue on to be productive, somewhat-intelligent, and slightly illiterate members of society.
If you want to transform your business into a productivity machine, get the ball rolling with a phone call to Protek. We can help your business integrate solutions to combat the increasing number of distractions in the workplace. Just give us a call at 801.290.0388.