Deal with Your Interruptions

Originally posted in August 2023 on LinkedIn

You can #negotiate nearly everything in life, including how you want others to treat you.  

You may be great at creating rules of engagement around deals or contracts. However, how well do you clearly communicate what you want at work or home? A simple example is dealing with a deadline and needing an uninterrupted period to concentrate. 

Have you ever needed to focus on something important but people keep calling or coming by your desk? 

If you office at home, do strangers ring your bell in the middle of a major call or disturb a critical meeting? 

Do you tolerate the interference and allow it to drain your energy? Does your stress regarding these uncontrollables ever get the better of you and you explode? Or, do you hide and not communicate your location to finish the pending project? 

There are better ways to respectfully let others know how to deal with you. 

For instance, do you like my most recent decorating efforts at our front door? No, I’m not highlighting the green pot sporting plants or our patriotic door hanging. Instead, look closely at the new sign. It reads as follows: 

PLEASE NO:

🚫Solicitations

🚫Estimates

🚫Fundraising 

🚫Politics 

🚫Religion 

Really Don’t Knock or Ring That bell. Don’t make it weird. 

THANKS! 

EXCEPTIONS:

✅Friends

✅Neighbors,

✅Packages, and 

✅Girl Scout Cookies 🍪

ALWAYS WELCOME! 

Guess what? The.Sign.Works. 

The knocks and door bell rings have decreased. I’m politely asserting my requests, while still welcoming future sales of Thin Mints. (Yes-please!)

A sign at your work might say, “I’m finishing a big project right now. If we can talk after 3, your request will have my full attention.” 

Think of a professor having office hours for students to drop in. Perhaps you and your coworkers can arrange a schedule with dedicated times to work without interruption and set other times for meetings or dropping by without appointments.

How have you negotiated rules of engagement that support your productivity?

What have you tried that successfully deals with interference which also maintains your relationships? 

Go negotiate what you really want! 

Check out the conversation on LinkedIn.