Are you tired of constant interruptions at work? Do you find yourself constantly bombarded with chats and unplanned “quick calls” from bosses, colleagues, or subordinates? If phrases like “Do you have 5 minutes for a quick chat?” or “Can I call you for a second?” sound all too familiar, then you’re not alone. The majority of people automatically respond, dropping what they’re doing to immediately engage in these conversations. But what if there’s a better way to handle these daily interruptions? Keep reading to discover effective strategies for regaining control of your workday and boosting your productivity.
Upon reflection and analysis, it becomes evident that the majority of these “quick calls” could have been efficiently handled through chats. It’s also perfectly acceptable to respond to chat inquiries a little bit later. Consider the broader impact: when you add up these unexpected interruptions, they consume a significant portion of your 8-hour workday—approximately 45 to 90 minutes, at the very least. Consequently, you find yourself working beyond regular business hours to compensate for the tasks that were originally meant to be completed during the day. This situation forces you to play catch-up with your priorities and to-dos.
It’s a common occurrence for people to face such situations regularly with a substantial impact on their productivity. Just like one of my mentees, who recently experienced a similar challenge. Her manager would approach her through MS Teams on a daily basis, requesting a “quick” call that ended up taking 15-30 minutes of her time multiple times throughout the day. This practice was also followed by other superiors, leaving her with the need to stay late after work to complete her tasks.
If you’re eager to improve your situation, I have great news for you. Keep reading, as I have an immediate solution, “magic bullets” that can help you overcome these interruptions effectively.