Thanks to Intel's Nathan Zeldes, David Sward, Sigal Lounchheim for such a thorough job quantifying the impact of information overload or what they call "Infomania":
On average, knowledge workers can expect three minutes of uninterrupted work on any task before being interrupted. Sources of interruption include e–mail, instant messages, phone calls, text messages, co–workers, and other distractions. The majority of these distractions are attended to immediately.
The result is that people average 11 minutes on any one “working sphere” (project) before switching to another project altogether. This extreme fragmentation of work results in a severe cumulative time loss, with some estimates as high as 25 percent of the work day. In addition, the inability to concentrate on an intellectual activity requiring more than a few minutes has a debilitating effect on employees’ ability to achieve optimal results.
You can read the full post here.
Makes you wonder what sort of organizational processes and norms need to be put into place as companies deploy IM, Blackberries and the like. What's become common practice in your organizations?