The Interruptive Nature of Operations: A World of Squirrels and Shiny Objects
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The Interruptive Nature of Operations: A World of Squirrels and Shiny Objects

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A tutorial presented at Velocity NY 20

A tutorial presented at Velocity NY 20

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  • 1. The interruptive nature of Operations: A world of squirrels and shiny objects Avleen Vig, Etsy Carolyn Rowland, Independent Consultant http://www.desktopwallpaperhd.net/wallpapers/5/b/space-background-photos-widescreen-wallpaper-53163.jpg
  • 2. Avleen: Staff operations engineer Carolyn: IT manager
  • 3. That reminds me...
  • 4. What is an interruption?
  • 5. http://funny-pictures-blog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/MEME-Leisure-Interruption.jpg
  • 6. Active interruptions from people http://celebug.com/celebrity-gossip/page/118/
  • 7. Passive interruptions from people http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonahowie/8583949219/
  • 8. 2013: Michigan State University
  • 9. Interruptions from systems http://newsaint.deviantart.com/art/shall-we-play-a-game-HDTV-168941674
  • 10. Interrupting yourself ! ! http://www.flickr.com/photos/tilaneseven/407167294/ Switching tasks constantly Stop being your own worst enemy.
  • 11. Are all interruptions bad? http://www.flickr.com/photos/doctorow/8456338189/
  • 12. Simple Tasks vs Complex Tasks http://www.flickr.com/photos/hugo90/8233834956/
  • 13. Commitment Saving the world
 20% complete
  • 14. Commitment Saving the world
 80% complete
  • 15. The impact of burnout Don’t let this be you. http://www.flickr.com/photos/arthur-caranta/2926332140
  • 16. Fallacies http://www.flickr.com/photos/mr_t_in_dc/4115860027/
  • 17. Fallacies: We need to know everything http://images.fineartamerica.com/images-medium-large-5/steampunk-information-overload-mike-savad.jpg
  • 18. Fallacies: Calendars help schedule your time Where does the work happen?
  • 19. Fallacies: The interruption is the most important task http://www.expertcomics.com/enr//wp-content/uploads/2013/03/1slippery-300x200.jpg
  • 20. Fallacies: Multitasking and productivity http://www.flickr.com/photos/indyplanets/3926147797/
  • 21. http://www.onlinecollege.org/Multitasking/
  • 22. Fallacies: Switching tasks is good http://xkcd.com/303/
  • 23. How do we deal with things right now? (answer: badly)
  • 24. You work too much http://buzz.socialmarketingforprinters.com/blogs/images/109195046.jpg
  • 25. “Avleen needs to improve his work/life balance. He needs to focus a bit more on his own health and family, and communicate to me if his workload is too high.” ! - mcr, 2012
  • 26. Tool disorganization ● Organization systems (e.g. Getting Things Done) ● Calendars ● Notebooks ● Post-it notes ● Emails to ourselves ● Todo lists ● Whiteboards ● Reminder apps ● Project management systems ● Our own [already over-taxed] memory
  • 27. Tool disorganization OVERLOAD ● Self-help systems (e.g. GTD) ● Calendars Notebooks Post-it notes Emails to ourselves Todo lists Whiteboards Reminder apps Project management systems Our own [already over-taxed] memory ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● http://www.flickr.com/photos/anotherphotograph/3571242832/
  • 28. http://www.flickr.com/photos/psd/7645555148/
  • 29. Interruption Science https://i.chzbgr.com/maxW500/2538256128/hAFB28B2E/
  • 30. Mentally switch every
 3 minutes http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwarby/3296379139/
  • 31. (or maybe 25 minutes) http://www.flickr.com/photos/14829735@N00/6928288961
  • 32. External interruptions
 lead to self-interruption http://www.flickr.com/photos/jdsmith1021/5755513005/
  • 33. Why you can’t focus http://www.flickr.com/photos/jessicamullen/5029081381/
  • 34. So what can we do? Sharpen pencils!
  • 35. Simplify
  • 36. Resist destructive urges
  • 37. Story time!
  • 38. WIKIPEDIA
 HOLE!
  • 39. xkcd #862 http://xkcd.com/862/ http://blog.xkcd.com/2011/02/18/distraction-affliction-correction-extensio/
  • 40. Prioritize http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisflorence/7542642880/
  • 41. Managers vs Makers http://www.flickr.com/photos/j_benson/7023561195/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/mkeefe/3123775954/
  • 42. Manage your tools. Don’t let them manage you. Take control of tools http://www.eduleadership.org/wp-content/toolbelt.jpg
  • 43. Take responsibility This is about discipline.
  • 44. http://memegenerator.net/instance/41896495 Fix your monitoring
  • 45. Address alert fatigue http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Chronic_fatigue_syndrome.JPG
  • 46. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
  • 47. Control Interruption http://www.flickr.com/photos/12023825@N04/2898021822/
  • 48. Leverage teams http://www.flickr.com/photos/cosmoflash/3005865241/
  • 49. Manage emergencies #warroom / standing down stations http://images.bwbx.io/cms/2012-05-16/etc_emergency21__01__630x420.jpg
  • 50. Break up large tasks http://www.flickr.com/photos/84617037@N00/60431147/
  • 51. Improve workflow
  • 52. BeerKan as an Agile implementation http://www.flickr.com/photos/joshbousel/4676037839/
  • 53. Ask for help! http://www.smartsheet.com/files/haymaker/Help.Support.Advice.Guidance.Assistance.jpg
  • 54. What really works for Avleen ● Communicate
 ● Validate
 ● Designate
  • 55. What really works for Avleen ● Communicate
 ● Validate
 ● Designate
  • 56. What really works for Avleen ● Communicate
 ● Validate
 ● Designate
  • 57. http://blog.peopleperhour.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/ReduceStress_at_work.jpg
  • 58. A good manager should Run interference Watch for signs of stress http://www.flickr.com/photos/bdenker/33237141
  • 59. Influence culture http://www.flickr.com/photos/plutor/3169836251/
  • 60. The making of this talk
  • 61. Quantify your own interruptions http://www.flickr.com/photos/magnetbox/3261773180/
  • 62. Where do I begin? 1) Biggest impact 2) Social media diet 3) Involve management http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-XguhVMDDtZ8/TrgFtH8Pi6I/AAAAAAAAAx8/dFOheYXk5JE/
  • 63. Questions? http://xkcd.com/705/ @avleen @unpixie