Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Multitasking & Billing

I remember one morning i was in the office on a weekend and saw my buddy there. he looked like a crack whore zombie witch troll. he said he'd been up all night. anyway, we were just chatting and we ended up talking about billing and shit. and when i asked him when he pulled an all nighter whether he bills 12 hours to one day and 12 hours to the next or just 24 on one - he kinda chuckled and said when he was putting in his time just now  for the 'day' but the system kept rejecting it. then he realized he was putting in 26 hours of time lol.  just goes to show u how desperately accurate and precise lawyers are when it comes to the getting the details right.

seriously though, what do u do when u r really multitasking? im pretty sure basically every firm has an official party line about multitasking/doublke billing or something like that, because u can never really be working on two things at once. or can u.... fuck if u bill the time it takes for u to take a piss, why not the time u r working on something else? like what if u r listening to a conference call, and working on a document at the same time. u dont need to realy participate on he call, just listen sometimes. be aware of what happens. chime in occasionally. what do u do? u cd try n parse out how mcuh time u actually 'particpated' on the call, and ho w much time u were typin g away. what about when ur doing both? what bout the fact that if u had not been on this call, u probably clda been making better use of ur time doing soemthing else? the best way to do this i think wd be to bill the time u were on the call, because u were responsible the whole time, and then bill the time u think u spent working on the doc. this isnt earthshatering. im sure uve ll been on that situation where ur on a cal with a partner, and they r sitting there on this call, working on something else, checking their email, surfing the net, opening their regular mail, reading a book, answering their cel phone, marking up other docs, whatever, and then some question comes up for them, their ears perk, and they go "sorry can you repeat that?" how do u think they bill this time? right. so ur just following in the glroius footsteps of ur role models here. there r lots of other situations where this comes up too - like working when traveling, working while reading, responding to emails in between working on somethign else, answering calls when working on something else. its not practical to switch timers everytime something happens, and u may well still be thkning about x whil u r doing y. so ur basically billing the time ur mind is in the game and ur body is engaged, whetehr or not they r focused on the samme thing. its not somethign u need to do consciously, i mean look at poor crack whore who billed 26 hours in a day, obvioulys he went thru added up the time he spent on the things he did, and he basicaly put in more hours worth o work than our feeble einsteinian time-space reality can account for, so he handled it the best way he could. the fact is, if u ask any two monkeys to do a task x, whether or not the multitask, they will both forecast and end up billing two different times for what they do, abnd both cd be equally justified.  this post is intendd to be just an attempt at making this blackbox phenomenon a bit more transparent, and i think there r two takeaways - 1. dont be afraid to multitask if it will boost ur efficiency, 2. u can bill that shit.  hell im on a call right now.

when in doubt, remember: role models



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