Enable Workplace Productivity with Digital Minimalism

Enable Workplace Productivity with Digital Minimalism

In the digital era, is it even possible to stay away from our gadgets? In this article, discover the power of digital minimalism and how you can help your workforce escape the never-ending cycle of digital distractions.

We live in a society that starves for attention. Our digital lives had made it so - every day, we are met with a deluge of online content that made it impossible for us to discern right from wrong. We end up downloading lots of apps on our gadgets, and lots of notifications pour out the moment we open our phones in the morning.

In the end, we become distracted.

And we can’t exactly blame society, because how can you focus when you have all these digital contents coming to you at once, in multiple platforms?

For organizations, the cost of digital distraction is indeed expensive.

Digital distraction is a huge factor in the increasing number of errors and stress levels at work, which affects organizational productivity loss every year.

Based on a recent study from the Economist Intelligence Unit of the Economist Group, an estimate of 581 hours per person are lost annually due to digital distractions. This is equivalent to 28% of the individual’s work hours, and a loss amounting to $34,4448 of productivity!

Clearly, digital distractions and interruptions are two of the most significant disadvantages of the digital workplace. In our effort to build a digital society, we are met with these unintended consequences that would also defeat the very purpose of digital transformation - which is to make us more productive and efficient.

So do we stop digitalizing our workspaces just because of this? Of course not!

Instead, business leaders can help their teams work on creating sustainable and healthy habits to practice digital minimalism. As defined by Cal Newport in his book Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World,

“Digital Minimalism is a philosophy of technology use in which you focus your online time on a small number of carefully selected and optimized activities that strongly support things you value, and then happily miss out on everything else.”

It is different from just asking your teammates to turn off their notifications or going offline after work hours. These are all common sense, yet we cannot fully do these actions as questions will flood our minds: What if there is a work emergency? What if I forget to turn on these notifications, and I missed out on important work matters?

The path to digital minimalism starts with optimizing your digital workspace.

Every enterprise will have tools for its digital environments. But to ensure that these technologies are true catalysts for productivity and efficiency, decision makers must communicate with their teams about their technology preferences. To do so, here are recommended steps that you can implement in your workplace:

  1. Audit current applications that teams are using. Are they still serving their intended purpose? If not, it is best to get rid of these applications from your inventory.
  2. Prioritize centralized user experiences. Choose interoperable software that covers the features that your employees need, rather than many separate tools to get the work done.
  3. Streamline and automate processes. Reduce digital fatigue by automating repetitive tasks. For one, you can configure a secure, single sign-on option for multiple platforms.
  4. Make room for employee personalization. Not all teammates will have to be included in every process or project management platform. Open opportunities for the workforce to give feedback.
  5. Provide pointers for individual decluttering. Simply encouraging your team to practice digital minimalism is not enough. Give them a step-by-step process, or prepare a weekly tip that they can do to declutter their digital workspaces.


Digital minimalism should be a business imperative. Putting this philosophy into practice helps your employees to reduce mistakes and ease digital fatigue; therefore, resulting in a highly-productive and efficient workforce that can always put their best foot forward.


Interested to discover new ways to empower your workforce? Read more about the latest enterprise technology, innovation, and sustainable industry practices at CXO Connect ME.

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Reference Links






Other References

Newport, Cal. (2019). Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World. New York: Portfolio/Penguin.


Image Sources

Desk. Photo by vadim kaipov on Unsplash. https://unsplash.com/photos/_6kI0qhmxc4.  
Phone. Photo by Super Snapper on Unsplash. https://unsplash.com/photos/ZsimLXUS_cY.
Setup. Photo by Domenico Loia on Unsplash. https://unsplash.com/photos/hGV2TfOh0ns.
Meeting. Photo by Jason Goodman on Unsplash. https://unsplash.com/photos/vbxyFxlgpjM.

CXO Connect Middle East Team