What Your Brain Needs to Be Productive

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If you’re a knowledge worker, your brain is the tool of your trade. To be productive, you have to take good care of it. If you manage knowledge workers, this means that part of your job is creating a workplace that keeps their brains happy.

Brain-friendly policies can hep the knowledge workers you supervise be productive.

Brain-friendly policies can help the knowledge workers you supervise be productive.

I teamed up with Dr. Edward Hallowell to explore this topic in an article for the Huffington Post called “Attention Management is Key to Productivity, Profits, and a Better Employee Experience.”

I was excited for another opportunity to collaborate with Dr. Hallowell, who does influential work on the topics of distraction and attention. He is a child and adult psychiatrist and best-selling author of numerous books, including Driven to Distraction at Work. Dr. Hallowell also hosts the weekly Distraction podcast

In the past, Dr. Hallowell and I have discussed both individual and corporate productivity. We decided to write this article because we saw a gap in companies’ efforts to maximize both. In fact, a lot of aspects of today’s typical workplace culture, such as the expectation for 24/7 availability, make it harder to be productive.

Many companies have initiatives to boost employee engagement or support employees’ physical health. We recommend that employers also create programs and policies that optimize their employees’ experience, including helping knowledge workers maximize their brainpower. The article includes ideas for managers to implement to improve organizational productivity, and ideas for any employee to implement to support their own ability to be productive.  If you know my work, you won’t be surprised to see that attention management is a big factor in our advice. It’s similar to the concepts Dr. Hallowell describes in the article, which he calls “C-state” and “F-state.”

Head over to Huffington Post to check out the article, and feel free to add comments if you have some. Dr. Hallowell and I would love to hear from you!

 

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