Multi-tasking and Malpractice

In this e-world, clients want answers fast and I often see lawyers juggling tasks — attending a deposition while using their smartphones to deal with some other question or problem. I have always believed that, for me personally, multi-tasking increased the error rate, and I've seen indications of that in the work of others, especially students who think they can attend class and bid on new shoes at the same time. The book The Shallows was a good read on how most of us were not made for multi-tasking. A new study is out that concludes that for multi-taskers, "if performance is measured with accuracy of results, the relation is a downward slopping line, in which increased levels of multitasking lead to a significant loss in accuracy." Rachel Adler, Raquel Benbunan-Fich, Juggling on a High Wire: Multitasking Effects on Performance. The study is available, for purchase, here.

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