There is a prevalent perspective out there that multitasking is bad for you. The argument suggests that it increases your stress levels and decreases productivity. Generally, it is true. However, when you are a leader, you’re required to juggle multiple tasks.
In my experience, avoiding multi-tasking isn’t the solution. Rather, I believe that it’s about crafting a personal methodology and reframing multi-tasking as a skill to be mastered. Like any other skill, such as reading, writing, or programming, I’m sure that the ability to multitask can be honed over time, and improved with regular practice.
For me, I use a strategy that allows for productive multi-tasking, while ensuring a deep focus on individual tasks. Steering away from the traditional realms of work methodologies, I turned to Scrum for inspiration.
Often used in software development cycles, Scrum operates with 1-2 week sprints. I’ve adjusted it for my personal needs and now use 2-8 hour sprints for my daily tasks. Within these ‘sprints’, all my focus is dedicated to a single problem. Based on my experience, the best performance is when you can allocate the whole day (or at least, half of the day) to one task. This approach allows you to achieve specific results and keep flexibility in multiple areas you might need to be involved with.
I wanted to share this approach, with the hope that it may encourage others to reconsider the aversion to multi-tasking, and instead leap into an empowered mindset of mastering and shaping it yourself. We’ve all got distinct styles of functioning; the key lies in discovering the one that finds the perfect balance between multi-tasking and prolonged focus. After all, in the brave new world, we’re called to adapt, innovate and constantly evolve.