Do you ever think about how much you could get done without all the interruptions in your work day? You are not alone! In his recent HBR.com blog, Turn Your Next Interruption into an Opportunity, Avon Products Chairman Doug Conant challenges us to completely rethink our view of interruptions. Conant’s perspective as a business leader is obvious, but his insights seem tailor-made for sales professionals at all levels…
Turn Your Next Interruption into an Opportunity
Doug Conant | HBR Blog Network | March 26, 2014
Modern life, particularly work life, has become increasingly hectic. There are relentless demands from meetings, emails, text messages, questions to answer, problems to solve, fires to put out. It can begin to feel like there is never any time to get “real work” done. If you feel overwhelmed by endless interruptions at work, you are not alone.
One of the most powerful lessons I have learned in my over thirty five years of leadership experience is that these thousands of little interruptions aren’t keeping you from the work, they are the work. When you look at it this way, a whole world of opportunities opens up. Think about it. Every single interaction is rife with the potential to become the high point or the low point in someone’s day. Every “interruption” offers an opportunity to lead impactfully, to set expectations, bring clarity to an issue, or infuse a problem with energy and insight. To reframe these moments in an empowering way, I call them “touchpoints.” If we choose with purpose to see these moments not as distractions from our work, but as the work, then we can begin to lead more meaningfully in each and every moment.
So, how do we do this? How do we begin to change our approach towards these interruptions? Where do we start? If we’re to treat each interaction as spring-loaded with possibilities, then we must prepare to engage within these moments in the most effective way possible. One way to train ourselves to do this is to identify the key components in each exchange. It is helpful to consider the three variables of every touchpoint… [READ ENTIRE BLOG HERE]