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Is Instance Messaging At Work Distracting You?

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October 30, 20211 Reading minutes

Are you overwhelmed by the constant flow of messages at work?

When you are in the office, asking a question involves getting up, walking and tapping (and distracting) your colleague. With chat apps, this translates to switching tabs and typing the question. Our urges to do so become more so as we begin to turn to even small things that would otherwise have been an online search or a wiki group.

You do not have to be always online.

The constant thought of being available keeps an open loop in your brain. This makes it difficult to focus on your work. This affects the performance of significant tasks.

Check chat and email less often.

The easiest way is to close the notifications app and turn off all notifications completely. I look at these messages only a few times a day – there are regular times, before and after meetings, end or beginning of the day, etc.

Let your team members know that you will check messages intermittently and how they can reach you in the event of an emergency. Below is the status message I have in my Microsoft Teams app.

I will only check posts every two hours. If this is urgent or you are blocked at your job call me here at Teams / Phone.

It allowed me to focus more on my work, and it was rare that someone had to call me.

Team communication and chat apps are designed to help you get your work done efficiently. Use applications in ways that allow you to work better.

Use applications wisely and to your advantage.

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