When it comes to communication in the workplace, there are few things more frustrating than constant interruptions. Yet 40% of people report experiencing more than 10 interruptions per day — and 15% report more than 20 — according to a survey conducted before the pandemic.
Frequent interruptions at work are not only annoying and counterproductive but can also lead to higher rates of exhaustion, stress-induced ailments and a doubling of error rates, research shows.
Image Credit: Taylor Hill | Getty Images. Ray Dalio.
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Naturally, communication is essential when it comes to the ideation process. And according to the codirectors of executive education at Stanford’s Institute of Design, arriving at world-changing ideas quickly requires alternating between individual and collaborative idea generation.
But how do you ensure the loudest person in the room — or the one most likely to interrupt another — doesn’t derail a meeting or creative session?
Ray Dalio, investor and co-chief investment officer of Bridgewater Associates, the largest hedge fund in the world, swears by a strategy he calls the “2-minute rule.”
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Dalio, who boasts a net worth of $15.4 billion, per Forbes, shared his perspective in a post on X.
“The two-minute rule specifies that you have to give someone an uninterrupted two minutes to explain their thinking before jumping in with your own,” Dalio wrote. “This ensures that everyone has time to fully crystallize and communicate their thoughts without worrying they will be misunderstood or drowned out by a louder voice.”
The two-minute rule specifies that you have to give someone an uninterrupted two minutes to explain their thinking before jumping in with your own. This ensures that everyone has time to fully crystallize and communicate their thoughts without worrying they will be misunderstood… pic.twitter.com/YIi3248e6M
— Ray Dalio (@RayDalio) November 19, 2023