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Weekly Wrap - 27th Dec

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What is meeting recovery syndrome? And what’s the number one perk professionals want the most?

‘Classy sportsman, super banker’ – is what some would describe former Central Bank Governer Dr. Indrajith Coomaraswamy. “45 years ago, as a rugby reporter and columnist, the sports editor of the erstwhile Times of Ceylon Elmo Rodrigopulle asked me to keep an eye on ‘this man’ – Indrajit – as he had a winning and stylish streak in him.”

Dr. Coomaraswamy is said to have captained his country at Rugby, and the banking industry as the Governor with equal flair.

 

What can Sri Lanka learn from Hurricane Katrina?

The aftermath of the hurricane caused ruinous damage, claiming more than 1500 lives. A study tour was organized by several Sri Lankans and the World Bank to understand the flood risk management efforts undertaken by New Orleans after the tropical cyclone. Bearing in mind that Sri Lanka too is highly prone to flooding, there were three key lessons that could be learnt from this global experience.

 

From potential infertility to hearing impairments and sleep disorders, studies have found that overusing mobile phones can have adverse effects on one’s health. Dr. Lasantha Wijesekara from the Health Promotion Bureau points out that health risk factors are always connected to overuse. These also includes cognitive overload, and information overload.

 

Ever heard of ‘meeting recovery syndrome’? In the U.S., the average worker contends with 6 hours of meetings a week; managers have to deal with as much as 23 hours a week. This has led to a rise of what organizational psychologists call "meeting recovery syndrome," the extra time we need to recover our brains after meetings so we can focus on actual work. How can we limit this ailment?

 

The perk professionals want most, is time. Experiments with four-day work weeks are spreading, and Microsoft Japan’s four-day week is new evidence that working less is good for productivity. Likewise, there’s an Australian company that banned work on Wednesdays, breaking the week into two ‘mini-weeks’. Within a year, profits nearly tripled and revenue increased by 56%.

 

In addition to this, there are other trends which will be shaping life, work, and the world from 2020 onwards. In 2020, one theme is poised to emerge: After a decade of profound change, professionals are taking stock and questioning the world we built and the values that drive us. Is capitalism working as it should? How will we behave as stewards of our planet? Why have we made heroes out of tech founders? Have we elevated work to too high a status? “Existential”, it turns out, is the word of the year. Here, LinkedIn looks at 20 Big Ideas that will change your world in 2020.

 

What more would you like to read about? Let us know in the comments.

The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce

Aisha Nazim

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