Small Distractions Can Have Big Consequences

John Krautzel
Posted by

Workplace distractions can become the enemy of efficiency in the workplace, and a distracted manager is more likely to neglect his employees and fail to meet company goals. Even the smallest distractions like idle conversations and smartphone fiddling can affect the whole dynamic at work. Consider some ways that distracted managers can be ineffective leaders.

Lack of Focus

Employees and managers have a difficult time focusing when a large number of workplace distractions take place, even tiny ones. A distracted manager cannot guide employees in a beneficial way if he is chiefly interested in other things. All managers must be attentive to provide the best direction regarding work-related matters. Employees struggle with staying focused and do not accomplish goals on time without adequate attention and delegation from managers. Experts also advise against multi-tasking in management because it does not allow anyone to focus sufficiently on every task. In order for employees to work in a productive manner, supervisors must stay focused on the task at hand to be able to provide guidance and aid if necessary.

Poor Decision Making

When managers are able to work without interruption, they can make better decisions on behalf of the workforce. A supervisor must not be preoccupied when the time comes to examine and synthesize information from multiple sources. Managers who make hasty decisions while being oblivious to the big picture can frustrate employees, waste company resources and make mistakes that lead to disastrous projects.

Bad Work Relationships

It is important to eliminate the distractions that can affect the quality of communication at work. An excellent supervisor knows the importance of paying attention to employees and interacting with them regularly. A distracted manager often doesn't have the spare time to build solid relationships with every employee and other managers. In addition, employees are hesitant to ask a preoccupied supervisor for help on a project, and they may view the manager as unapproachable or withdrawn.

Lack of Creativity

Quiet bursts of creativity are often ignored in an office filled with workplace distractions. Not surprisingly, distracted managers often experience creative blocks. If you are constantly discussing current events, there will be less time to decipher your own thoughts and possible solutions to problems at work. Taking the time to reflect back on completed assignments is essential for finding new ways to contribute and improve your productivity and performance.

Unproductive Meetings

Paying attention during company meetings is crucial, but the distracted manager misses important information even in attendance. If you want to remain up-to-date about policies, procedures and requests at work, you have to be mentally present during every meeting. Using the time to exchange and gather information from your colleagues and employees during meetings instead of daydreaming or checking social media is essential for success in the workplace.

A distracted manager can cause turbulence and slow productivity at work. To be an excellent supervisor, you must be able to concentrate when necessary. No matter what the cause of workplace distractions, it is important for managers to overcome them to cultivate a productive work environment for everyone.


Photo courtesy of Ambro at



Become a member to take advantage of more features, like commenting and voting.

Jobs to Watch