Is that software upgrade for you new hotel-booking path just taking too long?
Why is the iPad version of your travel app three months behind schedule?
Does a rural setting make for better travel-API development than Tokyo's bustle?
James Slavet, a partner in Greylock Partners, didn't take up these questions precisely, but just as well might have in an intriguing Forbes piece on Five New Management Metrics You Need To Know -- but likely never heard of.
Slavet's "Metric 1: Flow State Percentage," has nothing to do with spirtuality or yoga, but refers to how programming requires uninterrupted concentration, with a vibe that you are "in the zone, cranking on something."
As any writer or artist will tell you, sometimes the words or images just pour out -- or flow -- and you lose all track of time, and other times the kid needs to get picked up from school or you have a conference call and the work at hand gets set back.
"Unfortunately, most of us are constantly interrupted during the day with meetings, emails, texts, or colleagues who want to talk about stuff," Slavet writes. "These interruptions that move us out of 'flow state' increase R&D cycle times and costs dramatically."
Slavet argues that programmers and other intellectual types should ideally reserve 30% to 50% of their workday in a distraction-free zone.
He suggests that such braniacs should brainstorm about ways to increase their uninterrupted go-with-the flow time, and offers ideas such as banning meetings or placing nouveau do-not-disturb signs on desks in the form of "Go Away, I'm Cranking."
In a bow to the now-crystallizing flow movement, IT firm Atos is in the process of banning internal company emails in a productivity move.
So how would your company improve the flow among your developers?
Put them all in quiet rooms?
Relegate programmers to dungeon offices?
Play Mozart in their suites in hushed tones only?
Keep the pizza orders coming to developers don't have to think about food or leave the office to dine?
Sorry to interrupt your work day, but any suggestions would be appreciated.
Note: Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.com.