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The 3 Greatest Work Distractions of Engineers

These can be really toxic if you let them get to you.


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When you are an engineer working in a company, the odds are that there are days that you are distracted. You might or might not be aware of it, but this affects your productivity and focus, among others.

While there are personal distractions that come and go, some workplace nuisances are embedded in the culture of the company you are working for. As an engineer, of course this has an impact to your work negatively if you do not know how to handle such distractions, and you keep on being absorbed by them.

What are those common distractions anyway, and how can you overcome them? Check them below:

Overly strict policies

Many companies are so stringent when it comes to policies like tardiness. This is understandable because engineers are bound to meet a lot of deadlines in a span of a day. Your employer wants employees who are punctual so that it reaches its goals.

However, there is a downside to being overly strict – it can be more stress-inducing, which disturbs the morale of engineers when scolded about such policies. It is important to encourage punctuality, but resorting to harsh punishments could be toxic to the employees.

Your company should focus on productivity instead. What is the point of that first one to arrive in the office when that person has the lowest productivity rate in the workplace? This might be an extreme case but employers should give this more attention rather than enforcing off-putting company policies.

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Office politics

This is mostly about the boss playing favorites for the most unfair reasons. When the basis of favoritism has nothing to do with performance as an engineer, then you are doomed if you are not liked. Regardless if you are the one being favored, it is still a distraction to others.

Treatment from the boss should always be based on performance data to determine which among you engineers are the true “A” players who deserve rewards or praise.

Unrealistic expectations

A study from the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences found that “stretch goals” undermine performance for most organizations. It said that 80% of participants at the companies surveyed had failed to reach their assigned stretch goal.

This is why “stretch goals” or big goals which are beyond current capabilities, are a distraction. It hurts engineers who work their hardest and already reach peak performance but still fail to meet unrealistic expectations.

To fix this, expectations should be changed from time to time depending on the capacity of the organization. It is best to talk among the group which goals are still realistic, and those which are not should be changed.

Source: Entrepreneur

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