Posted 05 November 2009 by Chris Farmer
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A time management question relating to office gossip
On the last presentation of the effective leader manager course, one delegate asked me an interesting question that you too, might have wondered about.
During the time management section of the course, we were talking about "the best use of your time".
I was suggesting the idea that distractions can steal too much productivity from your day, and that we should reduce the amount of time given over to chatter and gossip. One of the delegates, a lady by the name of Tricia, asked:
"But isn't office chatter good?
It builds team spirit- I mean; we are at work for a large proportion of the day, and we are friends with the people we work with, so we can't just spend all our time working.
You make it sound like there is no time to talk unless it is strictly about work. That just isn't practical"
You are right.
There is some value in office chatter; But how much?
Maybe you should spend some time chatting and talking about the holidays, and "Strictly come dancing"- but for how long?
"The key work to bear in mind always is VALUE. Your goal in life is to add value to others.
To the degree that you add value to others is the exact degree to which your business will succeed.
Your business cannot succeed unless you continue to add value.
If you are talking to a colleague about their holiday plans, you are adding a little bit of value to another and the organisation, by means of building good team spirit.
But how much value is being added?
Five minutes chatting about holidays may be a good use of time, but is it the best use.
What about 10 minutes, or 30 minutes chatting?
At some definite point the chatting is no longer adding enough value.
Other things are more valuable.
Chatting is no longer the BEST use of your time.
So here is the motto I would like to suggest
Keep asking yourself
"What is the MOST VALUABLE use of my time, right now?
Note that the question is not" "What is the most enjoyable use of my time right now?"
IF talking about the divorce is "most valuable use of your time"- then do it.
If it is not the most valuable use of your time- do not do it.
The most important thing in life is to:
Add the maximum value to the maximum number.
Visit the Corporate Coach Group website for more information about our Time Management Training Course