What to do to do nothing?
In today’s hyper effective office workplaces you are tempted to think that doing nothing is some sort of a sin. Having nothing to do is a waste of your time and consequently - of someone else’s money (usually your bosses).
Manufacturers used to call it (and some still do) a downtime and a downtime usually means inefficiency a.k.a. - a loss.
But in the same way that the workplaces in offices have become hyper effective, the workplace of a service provider, blue collar worker has become more unpredictable: orders are erratic, plans usually are more of a fairy tail than a thing to follow and uncertainty is the most certain thing. Loosing time as a service provider is quit often a normal thing - some orders get canceled, plans are not fulfilled and forecast are a myth.
On these often occasions one is tempted to find something to do. If one is not a freelancer and has a boss, the boss usually encourages that seeking of “self worth”.
So, how can doing nothing in this case be good? You want to be useful, your boss wants you to be useful. Who is wrong here?
Doing nothing usually will not bring you more income on its own, but it can be a useful measurement tool of your success. Figures vary from industry to industry, but if you, as a service provider, can reach a “free” or “lost” time portion of 20%, you are on a right track (german industry standard).
In this case, doing nothing (but you need to be sure, that there is nothing planned to do) and measuring that free time will let you know how much free time in your process you have. Never mind, that that time can’t be immediately used - it is the measurement of the whole process, not that particular task.
I would like to link some references for these insights, but it’s just my experience and the way I was lucky to use it.
Using that free time and reaching a goal of 20% as a service provider could be another topic for the future.
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CREAMY SPINACH STUFFED MUSHROOMS
One of my favorites, super easy to make and very delicious, I make this all the time. 😋
AUTHOR Slice of kitchen life
10 medium / 5 large portobello mushrooms (approx 350-400g)*
3 tablespoons butter, divided
2 teaspoons garlic puree (or crushed garlic)
200g baby spinach leaves
3-4 tablespoons sour cream (or could use softened cream cheese)
4-5 tablespoons parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Remove the stems from the mushrooms (I just gently slide a knife around the base of the stem and it usually pops off quite easily) and wipe any dirt off with a paper towel.
Melt one tablespoon of the butter, and brush over the mushrooms, inside and out. Set aside.
Finely chop the mushrooms stems. In a large pan or skillet, heat the remaining butter, add the chopped mushroom stems and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic puree, stir and cook for another couple of minutes.
Add the spinach to the pan (it looks a huge amount, but will wilt down really quickly, just add it a handful at a time!) Stir to coat the spinach in the garlicky butter.
Once the spinach is wilted and reduced in size, remove from the heat, stir in the sour cream and then set aside.
Preheat your griddle pan over a medium/high heat. Spoon the spinach mixture into the centre of the mushrooms, sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan and place them on the preheated griddle. Allow to cook for 10-12 minutes - the mushrooms will be done when they are juicy, firm but tender and a glossy, dark brown colour.
To make sure your cheese is extra golden brown and bubbly, place the pan under a hot grill for the last two minutes of cooking time.
Let them rest for a couple of minutes, then serve warm, with lots of crusty bread!
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VEGAN STUFFED ZUCCHINI
I love this recipe mostly because I really like zucchinis. 😀
AUTHOR Megan Gilmore
4 medium zucchini
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 red onion , diced
1 red bell pepper , diced
1 clove garlic , minced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1.5 cups black beans , cooked (or a 15 oz. can, drained)
fresh cilantro (for garnish)
TAHINI "CHEESE" SAUCE
1/4 cup raw tahini
1/4 cup water
4 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon turmeric (mostly for color)
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Slice the top and bottom knobs off of each zucchini squash, then slice them in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the center seeds of each squash, creating a crevice that will hold the black bean filling. Arrange the squash halves, cut-side-up, on a large baking sheet and bake them at 350ºF until very tender, about 20 minutes.
While the squash is baking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and saute the onion and pepper until they start to soften, about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and saute another minute.
Add in the black beans, cumin, salt, and chili powder, and stir until everything is heated through. Turn off the heat and let the vegetables sit in the warm pan until the zucchini is done cooking.
To prepare the "cheese" sauce, stir together all of the ingredients in a bowl until smooth and creamy. Adjust any seasoning to taste. (Keep in mind that it will be slightly salty and tangy, but will be diluted in flavor when drizzled over all those vegetables.)
To assemble, remove the zucchini from the oven and fill each half with plenty of the hot black bean mixture. Top with a generous drizzle of tahini sauce and garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve warm.
Note: If you'd prefer to top with real cheese, I'd return the stuffed zucchini to the oven and broil them until the cheese is bubbly, about 1-2 more minutes, before serving.