Wednesday, October 03, 2007

I Hate Waste!

Time, money, technology, food ….

I can’t help it. Don’t know if it is genetic or what – but I simply cannot tolerate waste. My children serve themselves, knowing full well what they put on their plate must be consumed or they will be getting dirty looks from Mom -- my husband knows that if he throws something out, it better not have another use – or he’ll get the same!

It’s not just with the home life that I can’t stand waste – in the office each piece of equipment and software application is used to its fullest; my time is scheduled in 15 minute increments and I have a process or system for almost everything. Even though I am aware of certain time wasters, there are also many time wasters you have no control over. Things such as that call you got from a colleague you haven’t spoken to in years; or the “someday I’ll do pile” like that stack of magazines and article clippings calling to you from the corner of the room. Time wasters abound in every office. Click here to see my comments in Wasting Time At Work, You’re Not Alone ( recently published in New York Newsday.

In my world, there’s even more distractions to eat up productivity – working from home means that cleaning, laundry, gardening, errands … all the responsibilities of being a “mother” – scheduling, family and children birthdays, doctor’s appointments - call to me every day. There is very little delineation between work and home when your office is three steps away!

The point is – identify the time wasters and figure out a way to remove them. That stack of articles isn’t going to get read in one sitting, so why not make from 8:30 am to 9:00 am on Wednesdays “Reading” time? Tell your co-workers not to disturb you, grab a hot or cold cup of something, close your door and start week one of reducing the time you waste collecting the dang things in the first place!

The Legal Connection - Fall Issue

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