Peter Drucker – Quantum of Time

Quick Tips / July 22, 2006 / Alykhan Jetha

I was recently re-reading ‘The Effective Executive‘ and it was like I never read the book in the first place.

That book is a veritable gold mine! It has such pearls of wisdom. I mean it’s a book that was written before I was born and the principles still apply today. It is incredible that someone can write a business book in the 1960’s and it’s still very applicable today in 2006.

Just amazing!

Anyways – there is one thing that really caught my attention this time around. It’s his concept of concentration. He basically says that without concentration and allotting a significant amount of time to an objective – you can’t accomplish anything.

In this day and age of emails, blackberries, instant messaging, phones and whatnot, that concept is even more relevant. How many times do you hear that ‘bing’ of new mail or that ‘ping’ for a new chat. We have an incredible amount of distractions these days.

I remember hearing something a long while back. It went to the effect that every interruption costs you 20 minutes. It takes 20 minutes to get back into the same mind frame as before the interruption. So theoretically, 3 interruptions kill an hour – yikes!

Other people have talked about ‘being in the zone‘ and ‘being in the moment‘ and that is when you accomplish the most. Guess what – with interruptions – you just can’t be ‘in the moment‘ or ‘in the zone‘!

Even before I re-read the book, in frustration, I started turning off my wireless connection off on my laptop and leaving my mobile phone in another room. This way – no new emails, chats, calls etc…

This book re-affirms that practice and I think a lot of people would benefit by applying this concept of concentrated time.

So my question to you is: Are you cheating yourself by letting yourself be distracted too often?



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