Productivity Needs to be Redefined

I just submitted an article that I hope will be published at the Stepcase Lifehack website in the next week or so.

blackberry-ad.jpgIt talks about the sales pitch that companies have used to sell smartphones:  “Buy this device and you’ll be able to send a receive messages from all sorts of interesting places.”

This is echoed in the Blackberry ad featuring Nina Garcia at left.

The text is quite small, but it reads:

Ask Nina Garcia Why She Loves Her BlackBerry

“I’m a creative person, freedom is everything. I have to be inspired and that can happen anywhere. I’m always on the lookout for new designers and trends. I really use my BlackBerry for everything. At the fashion shows, photo shoots, ___________ (?) and shopping, it doesn’t leave my side. Forget the bag. I have to say, BlackBerry is my favourite accessory.”

So, according to the ad, she is able to use her Blackberry at fashion shows, photo shoots, when she goes shopping, etc.   This is not unusual.  I think most people who have Blackberry’s would say that they love them because it allows them to their messaging in non-traditional places.

The question I ask in the article I wrote is whether or not this is a good enough definition of productivity, by itself.  It’s obvious that millions of people think so, and that a great deal of money is being made by companies who are giving us these new abilities.

At the very same time, many people are demonstrating a slew of un-productive and bizarre practices, enabled by the fact that they have smartphones.  The habit of driving while texting is an obvious example.

The article looks at the fact that professionals and their companies need to be aware that when the definition of productivity is expanded, then smartphones destroy productivity, which is the reason why some companies are banning them from meetings altogether.

I argue that changing habits to suit a new smartphone is a little like allowing the tail to wag the dog.  Instead, the 2Time approach is to upgrade one’s time management system, and while doing so, find the right tools that make sense.

Hopefully the article will be accepted — if not, I’ll post it here.