How to Manage the Information Glut

The following suggestions on how to deal with the information glut come from the authors of TechnoStress: psychologist and human-computer dynamics expert Dr. Larry Rosen; and clinical psychologist and technology consultant Dr. Michelle Weil:

  • Set limits ¸ Ration the time you spend watching television, listening to the radio and cruising the Internet. Designate the best times for people to call or fax you.

  • Respond on your own time ¸ Disable the e-mail ding and turn off the ringer on the fax machine. You can respond after you've finished the task at hand.

  • Relax when technology makes you wait ¸ Instead of getting irritated while your e-mail boots or a company's telephone system puts you on hold, use that time to rest or tend to small tasks.

  • Use the technologies that work for you ¸ You don't have to acquire every new technology. If beepers and cell phones cause you stress, stick with voice mail.

  • Schedule time away from information ¸ Set aside slots for exercise, sports, dinner with friends and family vacations.
Gideon Gartner, founder and chairman of the Giga Information Group, further identifies the need for better "knowledge management tools" to deal with the exponential rise of information. He asserts "every executive today suffers from information anxietyĚthe absolute volume of information [is] staggering." He further predicts the rise of "knowledge servers:" sophisticated technologies that will be able to more discriminately filter information. As a result, we will witness the introduction of e-knowledge ÷ technologies that will be able to selectively classify, analyze, store, and retrieve knowledge.