Ralf Weiser's Blog – Shake Up Your Snow Globe! ©

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When the problem resides between screen and the back of your seat

Ralf a

When the problem resides between screen and the back of your seat

Most problems have a simple solution – if we just spend a little time researching on our own. That is not getting done much that way anymore. We are getting lazier and lazier, and yes, I am not the exception. Problems get passed on to others in a heartbeat.

Technology seems to have made that effect even worse. Rather than figuring out what the problem is by ourselves, we resort to asking others first. How many times did it happen to you that there had not been a problem in the first place – the problem may just have been YOU.

Taking e a look at the other side of the coin, you have a choice to make if you are the recipient of such requests for help on a frequent basis. Your ego may be delighted to be viewed as a specialist and addressing all these issues. Then again, you may just want to reduce this traffic. If the latter lights you up, then the simple recipe is to respond in about a day or two. Take your time with answering.

What will happen is that truly urgent matters get resolved by themselves. Chances are that if people still ask you for an answer on day two, the matter is indeed ready for you to solve it. The benefit will be that there are now fewer of them waiting for you.

On one side you are at the helm of either providing busywork for others, and the other you have a direct impact on how busy you are every day by being selective about when and what requests you answer to. You are sitting in the correct seat.


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2 thoughts on “When the problem resides between screen and the back of your seat

  1. Joe Ciaccio on said:


    Good insight! I was discussing this earlier this very week, with a recent grad we hired.

    I call this triage. I learned about it in 7 habits training. We used a 4 box graph with urgent/non urgent on one axis and important/non important on the other.

    To me, it’s all about doing the important/urgent in time, and making sure the important/not urgent gets done before it shifts to urgent.

    The real puzzle is how to handle urgent and not important. Tactfully declining this work as much as appropriate is the key to effectiveness. Trouble is, almost all work in an organization falls into this box. One tactic I use us to let it sit. If it has true merit, it will elevate in importance!

    As usual, another timely and thought provoking blog from you.



    • Hello Joe;
      Wow! I am humbled; I did not realize that you followed my collection of brain droppings. Cool.
      Your are spot on with the big bucket full of “urgent and not important” barrage of mail and tasks coming our way every day. Not too long ago I read a blog that suggested to have one drawer emptied out for this category type hard mail you get (to me that is the equivalent of sorting out the junk mail over the recycle bin before you bring the mail into the house). After 15 days you just throw it out. It reduces a lot of stress. I have gotten vigilant with that one.
      Since e-mail has long gotten out of control a huge time saver is not reading or responding to mail with you in the CC line. At first it may create a bit of a ruckus, but people will soon learn that if they want me to read and get a response they must put me in the To line. It save a good 30 to 60 minutes a day for me.
      Finally, being able to speed read is a great asset. I am not sure if you are familiar with Eye Q http://www.eyeqadvantage.com/?gclid=CKDk_972yLYCFQne4Aod9FUA_Q but just with their demo alone I went from a little more than 300 words per minute to more than 800. It’s good for specification reading too. 😉
      All the best my friend and hope to see you soon again. Success and God bless,


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