Don’t forget IM as a business app

Think  instant messaging and Facebook are  time-wasting interruptions for slackers who’ll do anything rather than work? Think again.

A new study from no less than the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and powerhouse IBM finds that  workers who maintain online connections to their bosses produce more than those who don’t.

The surprising finding: Not only were people who frequently communicated online with their manager more productive. Those who avoided their managers online were much less productive.

The researchers (two of them from MIT’s Sloan School of Management) analyzed a wide range of electronic communication channels, including e-mail, buddy lists and  social networking activity of 2,600 workers over 12 months to come up with their conclusions.

Employees who maintained constant electronic communications averaged an increase in revenue of $588 per month over the average; the luddites who didn’t produced $98 per month less than the average.

The researchers concluded that the underperformers probably felt pulled in too many directions with no clear leadership or direction.

As the modern workforce becomes more geographically dispersed it’s become a challenge for workers and managers to stay connected and know each other’s strengths and weaknesses.

Using electronic tools to forge stronger bonds and communicate tasks, objectives and feedback seems to be a key way for companies to keep everyone connected, directed and productive.

To read the details of the MIT/IBM study, visit here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *