It’s been a while since I tweaked my cousins in the public relations profession, and I had hoped the reason was that they had passed around some of my previous columns, actually read them and finally decided to follow my unsolicited advice.
Well, at least one PR professional is still running wild off the reservation.
The latest complete-and-utter-waste-of-time-and-money ploy to grab my attention came in the form of an acrylic piggy bank — a translucent green, plastic piggy bank to be precise.
To add insult to injury, the obviously-smarter-than-me professional who came up with said acrylic piggy bank idea, decided to jump start my savings habit by including a $1 bill inside it. Which means this particular PR folly cost about $4.50 (not including the box the plastic pig came in and postage).
How do I know that? We have a promotional products catalogue at the office and acrylic translucent piggy banks are on page 81. You can buy 100 of them for $3.50 each. If you want 1,000, the price drops to $2.79 each. There’s also a $40 setup charge.
To be honest, the company in question would have been better off simply e-mailing me the news release that was folded into the bottom of the box. That way, I might have at least glanced at it.
Although, I’m not too worried about having missed any earth-shattering news. Newsworthy information rarely arrives with gimmicks attached. It doesn’t need them.
Ever wonder what the most productive day of the week is?
Well, the folks at Accountemps thought it was important enough to find out that they commissioned a survey of 150 senior executives who work for the nation’s 1,000 largest companies.
So which day won? Tuesday.
At least that’s the day that 57 percent of respondents said was most productive.
Monday ranked second with 12 percent.
Wednesday and Thursday each tallied 11 percent. Friday barely registered at 3 percent.
Of course, a survey blurb wouldn’t be complete without my favorite response: “Don’t know.”
Tough to believe that 6 percent of senior executives have no clue which day of the week their employees are most productive. (If you happen to be the CEO of one of those companies and decide to make a change at the senior executive level, my e-mail address is below and I guarantee I’ll never answer an Accountemps survey question with “don’t know.”)
So, why Tuesday?
Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps, said it’s because Monday usually serves as a “catch-up” day after the weekend.
“Monday is when many regularly scheduled meetings, which can decrease the time available to complete tasks,” he said. “Many view Tuesday as an opportunity to focus their efforts and establish momentum for the rest of the week.”
If you’re wondering how to maintain a high level of productivity throughout the entire week, the good folks at Accountemps offer the following suggestions:
Make a plan. Spend 10 to 15 minutes at the beginning of each day mapping out your desired accomplishments. Prioritize the tasks that are most important to the business.
Sharpen your focus. People are more productive when working for an extended period in the same mental mode, as opposed to changing gears frequently. Try to cluster tasks that require similar effort or resources in the same time frame.
Limit distractions. It can be tempting to review e-mail each time a message arrives. However, unless your job requires an immediate response, it’s often best to check your inbox periodically throughout the day.
Don’t delay. Even peak performers occasionally put off working on unpleasant or overwhelming assignments. One effective way to overcome procrastination is to break a project into smaller, more manageable tasks.
Recharge. Taking short breaks throughout the day can help you replenish your energy and fight fatigue.
I’m going to take that last bullet-point as not only permission, but a requirement to start smoking again. I knew there had to be some reason my energy level has been down since the first of the year — no smoke breaks.
Mike Boyd is editor of the Colorado Springs Business Journal. He can be reached at Mike.Boyd@csbj.com or 329-5206.