It has become a commonplace that the throughput of a team’s or individual’s work is significantly slowed by context switching. If, instead of trying to multi-task and performing many different tasks within a given lapse of time, we finish a task before we start another, there will be much less context switching. Consequently, we would […]
Multitasking, kanban & neuroscience
A key assumption underpinning kanban is that context switching in work performed by people—the inevitable by-product of multitasking—leads to considerable waste. When individuals perform knowledge work, the impact of context switching resolves, in part, into the question of whether the human brain can multitask efficiently. Therefore, it is useful to understand the neurological basis for […]
Can we really not multi-task?
Can the human brain multi-task? The loss of efficiency and effectiveness due to context switching among various tasks is one of the underpinning tenets of why a Kanban approach helps organizations to reduce the lead times of their work. But is it really true that the human brain cannot multi-task?