Kristin’s post Multitasking: Don’t Do It prompted me to do something I’ve been meaning to do for a while—find the statistic on the percentage of people who actually do effectively multitask. I don’t know if the search gods were friendlier than they were on my earlier attempts to find it, or I just lucked out, but I got a quick hit: Only 2% Of People Can Actually Multitask — This Test Will Tell You If You Are One Of Them by Kevin Loria.
I did not take the test, because I’m very clear on the fact that I’m not an effective multitasker. One of the ways I keep focus is to turn off my new mail desktop alert. I’ve also been known to grumble about people who abuse IM—do they really need to interrupt me and get an answer NOW, or can they send an email and get one at my convenience? I either shut IM off or change settings to do not disturb if it is getting in my way.
Kristin made some good points. I wanted to add the statistic to the conversation as well as a few of the ways a non-multitasker copes. Unless you’re one of the 2% effectively multitasking—really, don’t do it.