8 top distractions kill your productivity and how to overcome

Social Media

Social media is the most dangerous culprit to kill your productivity. According to recent study by Team Lease, unrestricted use of social media has a quite negative impact on productivity of employees. This study also shows that, employees spend more than 32 percent of their time on social media which is average 2.35 hours per day.

How to overcome: You can use browser’s addon to restrict certain sites or amount of time; how long certain sites can be visited.


According to statistics, email checking cuts of 23 percent of the average employee’s workday and on average checks email 36 times per hour. According to another statistics, on average 30 hours per week people spend their time behind checking for new emails. These studies shows that, checking email frequently kills productive drastically.

One research study conducted by University of California at Irvine and the US Army, they cut off email usage for 13 civilian information workers. In this ‘no-email’ condition which was continued for five days, they observed every participants heart rates, computer usage and other things. They found that, in this time, they were more productive, relaxed and focused.

How to overcome: Check mail only 2 or 3 time per day. For example, at 11AM and 4PM. Checking mail for just 2 or 3 time per day will improve productivity drastically.


According to study, most business meetings kills productivity. Why? Because,

  • Those are time wasters
  • Those have no action plan
  • Those are not decision oriented they are just informational purpose
  • Those are not prepared earlier

According to research, executives says 67% of meetings are unproductive. Middle management spends 35% of their time in meetings and upper management spends 50% of their time in meetings.

How to overcome: Set clear expectation and action plan, set shorter meetings: 15~30 minutes (max), send materials in advance, start and end at on time (respect to other people’s time), stay focused.


“He will get promotion for licking the boss’ a$$”

“He gonna disrupt the team culture”

“She slept with the boss, and got this promotion”

“She doesn’t wear any underwear”

These are some common conversation in office culture and most of them are false. Those are being called as “Office Gossip”, these kills the work culture of an organization. Because it destroys trust, hurts feeling and brings down the morale.

How to overcome: Share news through notice which is hot, bring transparency why someone is getting promotion and someone not, clarify why someone is important in team.

Noisy co-workers

Some co-workers are talks so loudly and make noise, which hampers the concentration of other co-workers. Absolutely people are different. Someone can work in complete chaotic environment, but many people can’t.

According to study by Ask.com, they found 61 percent of U.S. workers agree that the top most office distraction are loud colleagues.

How to overcome: People should understand office is not like playground, loudy place. Their noisy behaviour stuck others, kills concentration and productivity of other co-workers.

Cell Phone / texting

According to study of Pew Research, ages between 18 and 24 exchange an average 110 messages in a day. A research conducted by Florida State University, found that probability of making an error increased by 28% after getting a phone call. And what about messages; they found that, probability of making an error increased by 23% after getting a text. These research proves that due cell phone or texting, we gets distracted and kills our productivity.

How to overcome:  Put your cell phone in drawer when you are working. Don’t check cell phone every minute, check once in one hour or two hour. Turn off cell phone at learn 30 minutes before going to sleep, because it is impacting our rest, and this suggestion from Arianna Huffington.  

Smoke break/snack break

Working continuously without break is a health risk. Breaks helps our health and it gives us motivation. However, if these breaks takes a huge chunk of your time, it can distract you and kill your productivity, so make a definite ending time.

How to overcome: Cluster your breaks and take timely break.

Workspace arrangement

Several time workspace arrangement can kill your productivity; where you seat and objects surrounding by you can be a crucial distraction. For example, if you seat just beside the main door where always people walking can be a huge distraction for your work.

How to overcome: Inform your manager or supervisor these are causing distractions and killing your productivity.

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