Getting and staying in a deep work groove can be challenging with all the incoming pings and dings from Slack, your inbox, and the slew of other tools that keep your team connected. Still, some organizations have successfully figured out how to create an indistractable workplace in which team members feel empowered to prioritize important tasks—and it involves a formula that your organization could adopt, too.
Nir Eyal, the bestselling author of Hooked and Indistractable, was a guest on season 7 of the Design Better Podcast. He spoke about the intersection of technology and psychology, how consumers can have healthier relationships with habit-forming products, and how, as a parent, he thinks about kids and technology.
Creating distraction-proof workplaces
Nir also shared his secret to making workplaces more distraction-proof. It all starts with team members who feel as though they can speak up when they’re getting derailed by a deluge of messages and meeting requests, he says.
“An indistractable workplace is one that gives people psychological safety to talk about the problem,” Nir says.
Another characteristic that indistractable workplaces have in common is people have an avenue to talk about their concerns with the enterprise, Nir says. For some it’s a weekly meeting; for others it’s an online forum.
Lastly, and most importantly, leaders need to set the tone for an indistractable workplace, Nir says. Often leaders will be the most distracted person in a room, fiddling away on their phones and buried in emails during a presentation or meeting.
“They don’t realize that culture flows downhill, that we’ll see that, and that people will act in accordance with how the boss acts,” Nir says.
by Eli Woolery
Eli is the Director of Design Education at InVision. His design career spans both physical and digital products, and he is a lecturer in the Product Design program at Stanford University. You can find Eli on Medium or on Twitter.