It is amazing how productive we all are these days. Because we have eliminated the morning commute, business trips, and most of our in-person meetings, we have more time to produce. In turn, we are Zooming hour after hour and pumping out PowerPoint presentations in a conveyor-belt manner. We are getting an incredible amount of stuff done and the numbers validate it. At the beginning of the pandemic, Goldman Sachs predicted that productivity growth rates would increase by .5% each year through 2022.
Despite the fact that some might say that production is all that matters, creativity needs to be at the top of our New Year’s resolution list. At a time when travel is a memory, long-winded meetings at the office have disappeared, and we have more time than ever at home, creativity seems to have taken a nosedive. Today we fill every silent moment with “productive screen time.” And while this already was the case on the way to the airport, or waiting in the airport lounge, now it occurs as we sit in the comfort of our own homes.
It is time for us to rescue our creative minds by allowing boredom to live. It is the cornerstone to creativity and provides the platform for reflection. In other words, if we choose to endure boredom, we can be more creative than ever. And while we all look for some of that quiet time, we may also want to find time to reacquaint ourselves with others. As screens replaced face-to-face meetings and water-cooler talk disappeared, all of the moments that the CFO deemed “unproductive” vanished. Our overly productive Zoom culture has left us multitasking at such a dizzying rate that we are missing the opportunity of being with others. Our wish for you this year is to find some time to disconnect from the digital handcuffs long enough so that we might engage in the kind of real human interaction that wakes up our brains. Those officially unproductive pauses, those stimulating thoughts, those creative connections, those moments benefiting from a carefully created company culture—all have been lost in the digital haystack.
We can, however, find a better version of ourselves in 2022 by finding moments of quiet reflection and casual interaction with others. And we can still get a lot of work done! Enjoy the first issue of what is going to be a wonderful year!
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