The Impact of Multi- Tasking on Performance

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The Impact of Multi- Tasking on Performance

The Impact of Multi- Tasking on Performance

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I have always held the belief that I produce the worst results when I have been engaged in more than three or four projects all going on at the same period of time. I believe this is usually the case because I do not have enough time to plan adequately what I am supposed to do early. Additionally, I have found out that following to the startup of a technical project, I usually move right to the next project without spending some time to collect enough information and analyze what areas need to be improved of the finished project. In this paper, I will take up the task of finding out how multitasking can affect negatively the overall performance of a project and the learning experience quality at the end of the project. The research question in this case, therefore, is whether there is a relationship that exists between the overall performance of a project manager and the number of technical projects undertaken.

Several studies have been carried out to determine whether the brains of human beings can effectively multi- task and learn. One such study found out that distraction by multi- tasking causes distractions that can significantly reduce the ability of an individual to retain new knowledge effectively (Walus, 2008). Other studies indicated that multi- tasking projects can be extremely demanding that can lead to deteriorated performance (Adcock et al., 2008).

Other researchers have suggested that multi- tasking usually leads to the spawning of projects. They argue that individuals usually are faced with challenges in completing tasks that have been multi- threaded. The end result usually is that efforts and projects do not get completed as times gets limited and demands increase (Gasser & Palfrey, 2009).

With the support of these studies, our research question can be answered that there is a relationship between performance and multi- tasking technical projects. It can, therefore, be concluded that multitasking leads to decreased performance and learning.


Adcock, R. et al. (2008). Functional neuroanatomy of executive processes involved in dual-task performance. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 97(7), 3568-3570.

Gasser, U. & Palfrey, J. (2009). Mastering multitasking. Educational Leadership, 66(6), 14-19.

Walus, Y. (2008). Is multitasking bad for your business? New Zealand Business. 22(7), 30-31.

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