Multi-Tasking is Why Nothing Gets Done

Multi-Tasking is Why Nothing Gets Done

Multi-tasking is complete garbage. Multi-tasking does to your productivity what binge drinking does to your ability to drive, yet job applicants and even employers somehow view that as a desirable trait. Pick up a résumé and 99 out of 100 times multi-tasking will be listed as a positive attribute.

It would almost seem common knowledge by now that the more thinly you spread yourself, the less likely anything you attempt to accomplish will get done with any level of success. No one can multi-task efficiently, yet business managers, when faced with the prospect of hiring more help, often tell their employees they have to “multi-task better”.

And that’s fine. It’s their business/division/department to run, but when the existing workers are already stretched and struggling, don’t expect them to relish the prospect of even more work, or to actually accomplish that work in a manner or timeframe that is likely to be acceptable.

Each time we switch tasks, we lose not only the time that wasn’t spent on our highest priority task, but also the time it takes to regain the momentum we lost. If the task switching happens frequently enough, or we’re being asked to juggle too many tasks, then our productivity fast approaches zero. The incessant task-switching causes us to get nothing of any consequences accomplished.

Entrepreneurs and business managers have to realize what the science has been saying for a while -- people are more productive and efficient when they can focus on one thing at a time. While it may seem intuitive that doing multiple things at once increases productivity, the exact opposite is actually the case.