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Are You as Effective as You Think You Are?

A survey by Marriott Hotels reveals that many professionals consider multitasking as counterproductive to performance—but also that they know what would work instead.

For planners who spend most of their work hours coordinating countless details, recent survey results from Marriott Hotels might be rather startling—though the results could motivate some to adapt in order to improve their performance.

Among the 7,588 business travelers (53 percent male, 47 percent female) surveyed across nine global markets, 71 percent said that trying to complete everything on their to-do lists distracts them from focusing on things that are most important. What’s more, 70 percent of respondents said they multitask at least one hour per day; among American respondents, 44 percent said they multitask more than three hours each day. Why does this matter? Because 70 percent also said that they find it difficult to relax and clear their minds on most days, while more than 80 percent said not having time to clear their minds negatively impacts their creativity, inspiration, and productivity.

Interestingly, respondents seemed to know exactly what would positively impact performance in those areas as they go through their workday. More than 80 percent said that inspiration often comes from a moment of pause, and nearly the same percentage said they are most productive when they take a moment to relax their minds. But how did respondents define “a moment?” More than 40 percent said it is 15 to 30 minutes. And 62 percent said that taking time to clear their minds resulted in finding clarity on a problem or issue. Additional survey results can be found here.

Overall, the sentiments of these business travelers from around the world can help planners adapt their own day-to-day routines for improved performance, and could also benefit the meeting itineraries planners build to maximize attendees’ performance and an event’s return on investment.

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