Chris Bailey has a piece in the New York Times about focus, distraction, and quality of work:
When it comes to focusing at work, there is no shortage of scapegoats to blame for our wandering minds. Social media, the ever-churning news cycle, chats with colleagues — these distractions can lead to a working state of mind that is far from focused. But there’s one possible cause of frequent distraction we don’t often consider: Our work isn’t complex enough, and there isn’t enough of it.
This isn’t as nuts as it sounds at first glance. The companies I’m studying that shorten their working hours spent plenty of energy on this, sometimes unintentionally.
If you’re in software or advertising, trying to fit the same work into a shorter day isn’t an exercise in just doing the same repetitive task faster, like on an assembly line; rather, you tend find new ways of working more intensively.
Of course it’s easy to imagine it being weaponized by unscrupulous or exploitative managers.