Blog posts

  • The Hemingway Trick

    In the groove or stuck in a rut?

    We talk a lot about flow states in our work at Work Time Reduction Center of Excellence, and sometimes it is easier said than done. 🤔

    So, I’m sharing a productivity tip from Amantha Imber in her latest for Fast Company which I think many of you in my network might find useful. ✅

    The concept she introduces here is known as ‘The Hemingway Trick’, based on an old adage from the decorated writer Ernest Hemingway – “when you are going good, stop writing”.

    Effectively, it argues that by leaving a task incomplete at the end of the work day, your brain finds it easier to switch on the next day by picking up where you left off than starting from scratch. 💡

    “Our brain continues to think about the unfinished task and when we come back to it, our brain is primed to easily pick up where it left off”.

    This is also linked to ‘The Zeigarnik Effect’, based on a famous 1926 experiment that demonstrates that our brains hate unfinished business so much, they retain the information until closure is achieved! 🧠

    You can try this out for yourself by finishing your work day midway through a sentence, slide, line of code, or whatever work you’re doing. If you do, let me know how it works for you in the comments!

  • Too much communicating, not enough focus

    People spend 57% of their daily work time just communicating in meetings, email, and chat. 😮

    That’s according to this new study from Microsoft on AI and the workplace. 🔎

    And that’s not all.

    🔴 68% of people surveyed say they don’t have enough uninterrupted focus time.

    🔴 64% say they struggle to have the time and energy to do the job.

    This phenomenon is an epidemic in modern organizations. 🤒

    #WorkTimeReduction can be a CATALYST to make your organization more efficient by creating a forced constraint around time.

    It can also be a powerful INCENTIVE which motivates and engages people in the process of finding efficiencies.

    Counter intuitively, while people have less time to get their work done, they have more space and energy to focus on what really matters.

    #ItsAboutTime we rewarded people for finding better ways to get their work done, not for the performance of ‘hard work’ and long hours.

  • 3 companies, 3 paths

    Which one will you take? 🛣

    Company A 💡

    • Embraces the potential for AI to radically improve their processes, streamline their operations and automate administrative tasks
    • Wants to be an early adapter of new technologies, but sees the opportunity to share the benefit of this with employees through reduced working time
    • Implements a shorter working week, boosting engagement to drive the integration of new tools to their day-to-day processes and leading to a more efficient organization
    • Steals a march on their competitors when it comes to attracting talent and retaining their best people, due to the attractiveness of their new #WorkTimeReduction offering

    Company B 🤑

    • Sees similar opportunity in AI and wants to get out of the blocks quickly
    • Struggles to get employees to engage with the process of integrating new AI tools in their daily work
    • Makes some progress and delivers some efficiencies, but not to the same extent as Company A due to lower engagement levels
    • Utilizes all of these efficiencies to realize cost savings and lay off some of their staff, further damaging morale
    • This causes some key people to leave, and any cost savings are swallowed up by the cost of replacing and retraining

    Company C 📝

    • Passively follows new developments in AI, but ‘too busy’ to change systems and processes at this time
    • Falls behind their competitors, who are delivering leaner, more efficient services with happier, healthier employees
    • Struggles to catch up due to internal resistance to change, and talent flight to cutting-edge market leaders like Company A

    Which path will your organization take? 🤔

    If you want to be like Company A, combining operational excellence with the most attractive and effective employee proposition out there, get in touch with us at Work Time Reduction Center of Excellence to start the conversation and your journey to a shorter working week. ✅️