Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Time Management and the Water Cooler.

During a workshop, Julie talked about long-winded co-workers she avoided. She felt bad about this and feared alienating friends at work. But since each individual could cost her 30 to 60 minutes of her day, Julie was frustrated. What could she do? She tried to be pleasant and keep her chats brief but her tactics often failed.

Julie noticed that she did enjoy talking with a few of her co-workers. What made them different from the others? These were people who added value to her day. They provided important information about her job, or, if the discussions became personal, the stories were briefer, more focused, and without repetition. Her other coworkers sometimes repeated the same stories or clich├ęs for days--even weeks!

What value does your communication have for other people? Do you waste time rehashing old ideas or repeating the same information to each colleague individually?

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