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“Studies of college students have shown that they can focus for only 10 to 18 minutes before their minds begin to drift; that’s when their brains need to do something with new information – make a connection or use it to solve a problem.”
Besides a bit more maturity and experience, your team is not much different than college students. So what do we do with the information about the length of focus time?
- Keep your meetings short and focused. Do stand-up meetings. Pick unusual locations. Stay under 45 minutes.
- Pace new information and seek closure. It’s better to talk about fewer ideas and to come to a conclusion rather than an extended agenda.
- Your team members want to figure out a way to apply new information and learning to a solution. Help them. My guess is that you want that too so show them the way!
- Help them bridge from a concept to a current issue with a personal story from your career.