...Co-Workers Are Distracting You from Your Work
What to say when dealing with co-workers who distract you from your work. So, here's the situation. You work in an open-space environment, and although you do everything you can to make it clear when you're unavailable for conversation, your eyes on the screen, your headphones on, one of your co-workers continuously distracts you with non-work-related comments. What should you say or do? Here's what you might be thinking and what you shouldn't say. "Leave me alone! "Go bother someone else! "Why can't you she, or he, see that I'm busy?" Here's a solution. Some people are unaware of those around them and miss signals like eyes on the screen and, yes, even headphones on, also, everyone has different work styles, and some people, extroverts especially, need external input instead of internal focus to do their work. This is a boundary issue, and it is your responsibility to educate your colleagues about how you work best. So, here's what you could say. You could be direct. "I know it may lo...
ok like I'm open for business, "but when I have my headphones on, that means I'm working. "Unless it's urgent, I'd appreciate no interruptions." Or, "I need uninterrupted time to get things done." You could try curiosity. "Does this open-seating arrangement work for you? "How do you get your work done without distractions?" Or you could try generosity. "This open-seating arrangement really makes it difficult "to get things done. "Don't you agree?" And this is generous because it puts the blame elsewhere, or you could try humility. "I hope you don't take this personally, "but I can't get my work done unless I am able to focus "without distractions. "Would you mind texting me if you need something? "And I will respond as soon as I am available, "or just go ahead and schedule time on my calendar to talk." And humor might also be appropriate in this situation, and you can say, "I know it's weird, "but sometimes, I need to focus "to actually get something done." The overarching idea, again, is that it's up to you to let people know when you need not to be interrupted. Make sense?