Wonderful white space warrior, if you’re on this page, you want to change the way you do things in a larger organization. Perhaps your initial motive is for yourself, but you may have a larger vision—to truly make work more wonderful for those around you.
This is hard work; the norms we propose changing took decades to engrain. But it is possible, and the more camaraderie you can find, the better. Below are numerous resources to help you in your quest, but the very best one is us! Write to us at [email protected] so we can whisper in your ear as you trudge the road to happy destiny at work.
Work has become relentless. Most professional teams feel they could be “on” 24 hours a day and never complete their task lists. They never disconnect and are frequently exhausted. And the endless sprint of COVID-19 has only increased these pressures. Bloomberg reports that the average workday has increased by 2.5 hours, and Indeed tells us that 52% of workers are officially burned out.
Adding to the challenge, employees often are held hostage by overwhelming inboxes, pointless meetings, and a thousand forms of wasted effort. This low-value work costs our average client $1M annually for every fifty people in an organization. What workers need are tools and systems to liberate them from busywork and give them the freedom to unleash their talents and true productivity.
When we have done our work to share the concepts of the strategic pause in organizations, we see results like these. You can have these results too!
Your advocacy is absolutely critical to our mission of helping your overloaded, multitasking teams reclaim the time to think and engage fully—so thanks so much!
Reread Chapter 10 in the book as many times as you need to ingest and memorize its detailed approach to what’s next for you, and don’t forget to ask for our help at [email protected]. After that, here are the steps you can follow.
Because white space is optimally a top-down movement, having the right executive at the helm is absolutely critical. The leaders who quickly embrace white space tend to be predictable in profile: they are the type who would get it, they care deeply about their people, and they are forward-thinking enough to grasp the price of overload. They tend to be highly respected within the organization. If they have control of their own P&L, the process moves even more smoothly.
When you’ve successfully identified a leader, remember to use the right language in your approach.
Remember to choose thoughtfully within the lenses of people, money, and ideas. Think of the top two or three things the leader is already driving in the organization, and position white space not as an independent idea but as an accelerant to those specific goals. And almost no correlation is even a stretch. Having more time to be thoughtful and less junk in your workflow authentically accelerates every agenda a leader could have. Along these lines, many white space advocates have even been able to fold white space costs into a budget that’s already approved for wider change and transformation programs.
The primary professional outcome of a white space transformation is reclaiming wasted time at work. While white space certainly has returns regarding balance, personal life, health, and wellness, most find it strategically wise to save that connection for later in the conversation and introduce the concept to leadership highlighting benefits around execution and returned professional capacity.
Lead with the business case, and get the work started. You will then find that all the personal, health, and balance gains naturally appear as part of the process.