Challenge #1 No Smartphone, TV, or Internet

Punishment #1 - George Costanza

Reward #1 - Samsung Note 3

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Going From Zero to CEO - Increasing Your Productivity at Work (With Infographic!): Challenge 1, Day 6

Written by Don P on . Posted in Challenge #1

(Reading time: 2 - 4 minutes)

"The thing is, Bob, it's not that I'm lazy, it's that I just don't care. It's a problem of motivation, all right? Now if I work my ass off and Initech ships a few extra units, I don't see another dime, so where's the motivation?"
- Peter Gibbons, Office Space - Corporate America

With waning book sales and my head bowed low, I sold out to Corporate America years ago. Sure, I had ambitions to be a bigger alcoholic author than Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, and Hunter S. Thompson combined, especially since Tucker Max had already started the revolutionary "fratire" genre, the whole dream seemed more like an evolutionary process. I sold quite a few copies of "From the Bottom of the Bottle," but of course, not enough to make a serious Pacman-Jones-at-a-strip-club living. At the very least, the book royalties funded a few book tours and all the drinks necessary to keep those parties going. - Make it Rain

Nevertheless, I had a finance degree to fall back on and was armed with so much ambition it was only matched by my painful lack of job market awareness. First job: Large, public company with a pay package comparable to a Bingo Caller. The job sucked, the company sucked, the pay sucked, and I lasted 8 months before looking for a new job. Second job: Large, private company with a pay package comparable to an Activity Director at a nursing home. The pay was obviously better, the company environment leaps-and-bounds ahead of the previous job, but the long hours, stiff competition, and the fact that I somehow ended up in sales sometime during my 3rd year made me look for another job after four years. Current job: Another large, public company, but a ridiculous pay package that I won't even share here. Sorry. Let's just say it's enough to ensure that my only current knowledge of the existence of non-rich people is from watching The Wire.

As dynamically different as all three of those jobs were, they all had one thing in common: How I spent my day.

Typical Day

  • Start the day, boot up the computer, check corporate e-mail (15 minutes)
  • Check local, national, and financial news (30 minutes)
  • Take a break (15 minutes)
  • Recheck corporate e-mail (1 minute)
  • Do actual work (4 minutes)
  • Read Facebook and Twitter feeds via smartphone (30 minutes)
  • Check bank account and pay any outstanding bills (30 minutes)
  • Do actual work (5 minutes)
  • Take another break (15 minutes)
  • Read every news article on (2 hours)
  • Lunch time (1 hour)
  • Converse with co-workers (2 hours)
  • Take another break (15 minutes)
  • Check Facebook/Twitter again (15 minutes)
  • Do actual work (5 minutes)
  • Shutdown and Go home!

The Big Change

But recently the lack of internet and a smartphone has dramatically shifted my work ethic from Lindsay Lohan to Tom Hanks. The "Do actual work" category has skyrocketed from what was once roughly 15 minutes a day to now around 6 hours each day on Friday (Nov. 1st) and Monday (Nov. 4th). Since I was sick on Tuesday and took the day off, I worried Wednesday morning during the drive to the office, thinking I would have piles of paperwork on which to catch up. But not so. Nothing. I already finished all of my work for the week in as little as two days. A Vice President — a man whose only compliment towards me in the last two years I've worked here has been, "Holy shit, those Jaguars really sucked this weekend! Maybe you should find another team," — actually came up and said, "Hey, great job on that report you sent out last week. Very informative; keep it up!"

But I'm not the only one! Here's an infographic from 2011 demonstrating how employees use their time:

Wasted Time in the Workplace - Infographic
Time Doctor – Track your time. Track your team’s time. Know EXACTLY what is REALLY going on.


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