The Corporate Storyteller

Expert tips on management communications and the power of storytelling

Monday, June 07, 2010


Data Overload Frying Your Brain? Think in Stories!

Data overload is frying our brains, scientists say. While many people believe they're skillful multitaskers, the fact is, according to recent studies, only three percent of the population is able to multitask effectively. The rest of us are finding it more difficult to focus on anything and to filter irrelevant information. One significant result is higher stress and declining short-term memory.

The increasing amount of information people process each day is mind-boggling. The average person two years ago consumed three times as much information as an average person 50 years ago. And we're jumping from one task to another with alarming frequency. According to an article in The New York Times, computer users at work change windows or check e-mail or other programs nearly 37 times an hour!

One way to manage the deluge of information is to create a story around data you need to remember. Stories help us make sense of our world, creating context for what we see and hear. The trick is to focus on the useful data and ignore the rest; discerning the difference is becoming more and more challenging by the day.

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