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Social Media is a Distraction at Work, Can Cost Millions in Lost Productivity

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A new study shows that sites like Facebook and Twitter are drastically cutting into workplace productivity. Shocker, huh?

Take a stroll through any office or cube farm. Lean over the counter and take a peek next time you’re at your doctor’s office, or at a customer service window. It won’t take you long to find someone on Facebook, Yahoo, or texting on their cellphone. The ‘pling’ of the Facebook Chat notification echos through the halls here at Cars 108 on a daily basis. 

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A study published by Harmon.ie shows that about 53% of us waste roughly an hour a day on distractions like Facebook, texting, instant messaging, email and switching back and forth between work and non-work related windows on our computers. Its findings conclude that wasted time translates into about $10,375 per year for an average employee, and can mean as much as $10 million in lost productivity per year for a company with 1,000 employees.

Here’s the one that really grinds my nerves:  Two out of three employees will interrupt a group meeting to communicate with someone via text, email, or phone.  Is there anything more frustrating than when you’re discussing a project with someone, and suddenly their pocket vibrates, and they immediately check out – in order to exchange texts with a significant other?

The conclusion is, all those awesome social media tools that were supposed to empower us, and help us increase productivity, are having the opposite effect.  Hey, friend me on Facebook, and we can discuss it.  But please, only during regular business hours!

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