Time and attention: THE soft skill of every knowledge worker

In his talk, Time and Attention, Merlin Mann talks about being conscious of what grabs your attention, negotiating requests for attention, and communicating organization culture around communication.

I enjoyed the part about defaults. Simple tips for improving concentration:

  • Configure your email client to not notify you when an email arrives.
  • Configure your instant messenger to not notify you when anyone changes status.
  • Change your browser’s home page to be something simple, something that does not display recent news, quizzes, weather, traffic, recent emails in a personal email account, recent blog posts. I prefer the fastest loading option: about:blank.

I recently saw Merlin Mann speak at a OmniFocus meeting hosted by The Omni Group.

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Written on June 29, 2008