Monday, May 10, 2010

Sit. Stand. Go.

Here’s an interesting position from the personal tech pages of the New York Times, opening metaphorically with: “It takes courage to stand up at work.”

This ergonomic take on the merits of sitting or standing at work travels briefly into the creative performance arena which piqued my interest. At work some of us are sitters, some standers, some pacers, (some sleepers) and – for reasons of comfort and concentration – most of us like to mix it up.

The author talks of sitting for a coffee and bite at the desk, standing for the creative intensity of writing an article and sitting down again for web surfing, making phone calls and watching online videos.

It takes me back to the earlies at P&G in the Middle East as a marketing manager. I had a rep. for rarely being behind a desk. I loved being down on the street and out in the souks connecting with the locals. They were the market. For productivity and career it proved the better place to be (and still is).

It’s different strokes for different folks in different arenas, and I’m interested to hear all takes on this positioning. Performance-wise overall I see it as:

Sitting – Start things moving
Standing – Get things done
Moving – Make things happen

Tom Peters got it spot on as long ago as 1982 when he wrote about Management By Walking Around (MBWA). Still the best technique around.