Facebook and Twitter Are NOT Work Distractions by anamaulida


									All over the world you can almost hear parents shouting "Will you turn
off that Justin Bieber and get on with your homework..!" For decades
parents have believed that music is a distraction, that it puts children
off their homework. Your parents probably shouted at you to "turn that
music down", yet for as many years as we can remember children have
devised ways of listening to music without their parents knowing that
they are "being distracted".But the children who were allegedly
distracted from doing their homework have gone on to pass their exams,
indeed to gain degrees, doctorates - heck, some of them will have even
done brain surgery. Thank goodness their parents stopped them from
listening to music...! The thing is - music is not the distraction to
learning that some people think it is.Nowadays, the same theory that
music is a distraction appears to be applied in the workplace where the
assumption is that Facebook or Twitter are a distraction to "real work".
Indeed, many businesses block such social sites because they prevent
people from getting on with their job. Only the other day I heard of a
woman who was supposedly spending 15 hours of her working week allegedly
using Facebook and therefore not working hard enough in her working role.
The result? The business owner has blocked Facebook for the entire
company - meaning of course he also has no idea what people are saying
about his firm as he too cannot log in to social sites now. Blocking
social networks may appear to improve productivity, but it also reduces a
firm's ability to monitor things.Research, however, adds to the evidence
which shows that banning Facebook or Twitter or other social sites is
counter-productive. For a start if you do ban social sites, most of your
staff can access them on their mobile phones anyway. Secondly, you can't
easily monitor or maintain your corporate reputation. And thirdly,
studies show that when you ban social sites productivity goes down, not
up.A recent study adds to this by showing that diversion from our normal
work is actually essential in helping us perform our everyday activities.
It seems that in order to pay attention fully to an activity we need
breaks from it. According to the researchers, even people who meditate
are not completely devoid of distraction - it is how they deal with that
distraction that is important. Accepting there will be distractions and
disturbance appears to be key in making meditation succeed.So, the so-
called "distractions" of Facebook, personal phone calls and the random
Tweet will all improve work performance by allowing staff to concentrate
better on the real task in hand. Forcing people to work, work, work
actually reduces their chances of being able to concentrate.In just the
same way that teenage children have found that music tends to improve
their ability to do their homework, many office workers have realised
that Facebook and Twitter also help them do their job better. It's just a
shame their bosses haven't worked that out yet - perhaps they need to
listen to Justin Bieber for a while to take their mind off things.

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