11 Minutes of Action

That’s how much real action is in a typical NFL television broadcast.  David Biderman’s article by the same name in the January 15th edition of the Wall Street Journal cites a WSJ study of four recent broadcasts that suggests the average amount of time the ball is in play on the field during an NFL game is about 11 minutes.  So if you add up all the real action between the time the ball is snapped and the time it is whistled dead, you come up with a whopping 11 minutes.  That means you could actually watch each of the conference championship games during half-time of the Super Bowl and still have enough time to have a few beers.

That got me thinking about how productive I am on a daily basis.  Let’s say that instead of a 3 hour NFL broadcast, we triple that and say we worked a brutal 9 hour day.  Now the question I have to answer is; have I put in more than 33 minutes of real work in that 9 hour ‘broadcast’.  Was 60% of the time spent standing around or thinking about my next move like it is in the NFL?

The ratio of inaction to action in the NFL is about 10 to 1.  Apply that ratio to your workday.  On a typical 10 hour day, are you in action more than 1 of those hours?  What or who is eating all of your productive time?

Now the NFL is as popular a sport as any in the world and by all accounts they have cracked the code on this 11-minute workday thing.  You know to be honest, I haven’t decided if I’m confused or simply jealous.

I’ve got to go … this blog took me 20 minutes to write and I promised myself I was going to have a better work-life balance.  I’m suddenly exhausted!

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