As the end of the year fast approaches, so do a plethora of deadlines at the day job. As someone who generally understands how things work at the office, I get asked to answer a bunch of questions and perform a number of "favours" every day. Depending on what's going on, I'll always try to make time for people. There are limits, however.
It'll Only Take You Five Minutes
One interesting remark that a number of people seem to make at the office goes something like "it'll only take you five minutes", as though they have a keen insight into the myriad of other tasks that are being juggled. Interestingly enough, a five minute task usually requires anywhere between fifteen and twenty, which means that on a good day I can get three or four "five minute tasks" done every hour. I work between ten and twelve hours a day, which works out to an average of 37 "five minute" jobs per day.
I can't remember the last time I accomplished as few as 37 tasks in a day. There are usually many, many more.
A lot of people around the world are likely in a similar boat, forever inundated with requests from all sides while simultaneously trying to dedicate the brain power to solving the bigger problems of the day and remembering to get up to use the bathroom every so often to prevent a very embarrassing "accident".
Going to the bathroom usually takes me less than 90 seconds. In that time, there are usually two new emails with requests waiting for me before I even make it back to the desk.
Five minutes? I wish I had five minutes …