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BP should send their entire staff on a yacht outing.

June 19, 2010

Or at the very least, to a movie.

The President and the media (and probably lots of other people) are up in arms about Tony Hayward participating in a yacht race yesterday.  What is so wrong with him taking a break?

Jonah Lehrer (very smart guy) wrote about this topic at Science Blogs.  In fact, in his post “High Stakes Innovation”, he recommends that the BP engineers need to take breaks where they stop thinking about the oil leak in order to actually improve their chances of finding a fix for the oil leak.

I remember by organic chemistry teacher who recommended that we all go to a movie the night before our big final.  Most of the class thought that he was insane but I thought that it was good advice.  If all that you focus on is studying organic chemistry, by the time of the actual exam you can’t really focus on it anymore.

The same is true when I’m stuck on a problem with data management or analysis.  In grad school, I would often think of the solution after I had completely given up and was walking to the bus.  Or even while asleep.  I once woke up and knew the answer to a take home final question that had me completely stumped.

Boat rides for all!  Movies!  Baking!  Naps!  Whatever it takes to relax and refresh and refocus and then it’s back to work.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 20, 2010 5:21 am

    My company has a policy of giving employees the day off the day of an exam for a very similar reason. Our exams are generally in the evening, and the idea behind the day off is the very same as what you’re suggesting – you wake up on your own schedule, do whatever you need to do to relax all day, and when the exam time rolls around, you’re refreshed and ready to pour your knowledge into it.

    Worked like a charm.

  2. crazybengal permalink*
    June 20, 2010 8:46 pm

    Obama went golfing.

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