Is Know-how Actually Making You Extra Productive?

tech and productivity

Yearly, we see the discharge of dozens to a whole lot of latest technologies and instruments designed to make us extra productive. They’re meant to make our companies run extra effectively, save us time on duties we don’t need to do ourselves, and finally assist us get extra achieved each day. However is expertise actually making you extra productive?

Undoubtedly, you’ve encountered a minimum of a couple of applied sciences which have helped you grow to be a extra productive employee.

For instance, you is perhaps rather more constant together with your digital calendar than you ever have been with a written one, otherwise you might need a improbable system for managing duties in your favourite mission administration app when working remotely.

However total, is expertise actually making you extra productive? Or is it introducing simply as many issues because it’s fixing?

Manufacturing and Effectivity

First, we are able to take into consideration the literal productive potential of latest applied sciences and the better efficiencies they will unlock. These are finest understood in manufacturing; new expertise can permit a manufacturing facility to churn out a better variety of merchandise per hour, which is essentially indeniable. This space will be precisely measured, simply understood, and tracked to make sure it doesn’t include unintended penalties. 

Sadly, not all types of expertise provide such easy advantages.


A extra complicated dialogue matter revolves round instruments designed to automate or outsource operational duties which are each troublesome and mundane. On the floor, any mode of automation ought to hypothetically make us extra productive; as soon as we work out a strategy to permit a activity to be achieved with out human intervention, we are able to ceaselessly depart it off our activity lists and deal with different, extra productive duties. Nevertheless, automation is extra difficult than this.

For starters, automation isn’t at all times an easy course of.

A developer I do know has a catchphrase: “why spend 2 minutes doing a activity when you possibly can spend four hours failing to automate it?” The thought right here is that designing and implementing automated options isn’t easy; you’ll usually run into unexpected limitations and complexities that compromise your capacity to discover a handy path ahead.

Generally you’ll spend much more time automating the duty than you’d merely be doing it.

There are additionally sometimes unexpected penalties of automating sure forms of duties. Predictable, repetitive duties are straightforward to automate, however outcomes grow to be extra questions when you get into extra subjective territory. For instance, when utilizing advertising automation software program, you may ship extra messages to extra prospects. Nonetheless, they’ll be much less customized—they usually might come throughout as chilly or robotic in consequence.

This isn’t to say that automation isn’t productive—it actually is, below the proper situations—however it’s not a assured strategy to improve productiveness.


We additionally want to consider the ability of expertise because it pertains to communication. Definitely, we’ve skilled a revolution within the methods we talk. We now have the ability to ship messages and/or manage ideas in dozens of various methods.

All through the day, we use cellphone calls, video chats, on the spot message companies, mission administration platforms, and different instruments to remain involved with our coworkers, collaborate on initiatives, and present new updates. Certainly this should make us universally extra productive, proper?

The fact is extra complicated than that. Whereas the variety of out there communication channels will increase our capacity to make use of an efficient platform, it additionally will increase our chance of utilizing the “mistaken” platform; messages can get misplaced as a result of the sender used the mistaken channel to ship it or as a result of they communicated it ineffectively utilizing an unpolished device.

Communication instruments are additionally a problem due to their ever-present actuality.

Now we have fixed entry to sending and receiving messages, and expectations have modified accordingly. Many trendy staff are below a continuing barrage of notifications; they get alerts at any time when they obtain a brand new message or at any time when a brand new merchandise is added to their mission administration platform of alternative.


These function distractions and may severely hinder an individual’s capacity to deal with the work in entrance of them. In different phrases, they find yourself spending extra time reviewing and responding to notifications than they spend doing their “precise” job.

Work-Life stability

We additionally want to consider how expertise has impacted our private lives and work-life stability. Nowadays, it’s not unusual for folks to proceed sending and receiving emails effectively into nights and weekends—despite the fact that it’s after work hours. Cell gadgets have allowed work to creep into our private time, which will increase stress (whether or not you understand it or not) and prevents you from doing all your finest work if you’re on the clock.

Entry to Data

Inarguably, expertise has elevated our entry to info. In only a few minutes, any individual with an internet-connected machine can inform you concerning the historical past of Central Europe, the present worth for a barrel of oil, and who the primary visitor host of Saturday Evening Stay was. Open any information or social media app, and also you’ll be immediately plugged into the world of present occasions.

You possibly can be taught new issues and discover the reply to any downside inside minutes — and that is virtually universally a very good factor. 

Being immediately plugged in has a couple of main drawbacks. For starters, all this entry to info is distracting. With a couple of minutes of scrolling, you possibly can be taught concerning the new motion pictures popping out subsequent yr, the efficiency of your favourite sports activities crew, and the way your buddy’s trip in Maui goes.

Why wouldn’t you do that, even when it means sacrificing a couple of minutes of labor? Repeated sufficient instances throughout the day and sufficient days of the week, and also you’ll find yourself shedding hours with out even realizing it.

On prime of that, entry to info isn’t at all times helpful. One motive huge tech firms have been criticized for changing into too huge or too highly effective is that they’ve oblique management over what you see; it’s possible you’ll find yourself with an unfaithful or incomplete opinion on a given matter due to your bias and due to what algorithms have “determined” to point out you.

Busyness vs. Productiveness

Anybody with a cellular machine will in all probability inform you they really feel busier now than they did three years in the past, 5 years in the past, or a decade in the past. Why? As a result of new applied sciences evolve to maintain us engaged for longer durations of time. The whole lot from mission administration platforms to social media apps is designed to maintain us hooked.

Does busy translate to productive?

The accessibility of latest expertise means we are able to keep related for longer durations of time. In different phrases, we’re incentivized to be busier for longer durations of time.

However right here’s an vital consideration—“busy” doesn’t at all times translate to “productive.” Simply since you’re actively specializing in one thing doesn’t imply it’s serving to you obtain your targets, nor does it imply it’s good to your backside line. Know-how has a wierd approach of convincing us we have to do one thing—with out us really needing to do it.

Coaching and Familiarity With Know-how

It’s additionally value noting that it takes time to learn to use new expertise, and that point shouldn’t be uncared for. It’d take you an hour or extra of experimenting to determine how finest to make use of a brand new app, and if you find yourself changing this app sooner or later, that hour might be successfully wasted.

In the event you’re working with individuals who aren’t very acquainted with expertise or have a tough time studying new processes, this time funding will be excessive. Some success in innovation relies on benefit, some on luck, some on connections–however sometimes some mixture of all three. 

Sheer Quantity

Most individuals who use expertise to extend productiveness attempt to incorporate as a lot expertise as attainable; they set up dozens of various apps, work with dozens of various platforms, and try to juggle all of them without delay. That is usually counterproductive, forcing you to observe redundantly overlapping methods and waste time (and cash) on apps you don’t use ceaselessly.


So, does expertise really make you extra productive, or does it intrude together with your productiveness? The reply isn’t so easy.

Whereas tech introduces us to the potential to enhance our lives, it additionally has severe drawbacks and penalties that should be thought of for those who’re going to make use of these instruments responsibly. If you end up pondering {that a} new app or device is strictly what it is advisable to double your productiveness, take a step again, and take into consideration the nuances and potential penalties of your resolution.

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