'APAR' Fake Work
Walk the floor of any office and if you are observant you will not miss out some guys stomping around the floor at very high pace, throwing orders ... looking busy doing critical activities, seemingly delivering against time on some top management instructions.
Such are great exponents of 'APAR' Work...APAR Work stands for 'Activities Projected As Real' work. It is fake work.
Much as late in the evenings as APAR Workers may stay in their offices to impress their bosses who leave late, a neutral objective analysis of their activities will indicate a huge mis-match with their contributions. Most such people do not really deliver any great value to their organisations despite seeming ever so busy and expending energy.
Unfortunately, such leaders push their teams as well into this trap of APAR 'busyness' - sometimes unconsciously, often consciously but mostly maliciously. You will now be able to understand why everybody appears to be working so very hard genuinely in such teams and yet accomplishing much less in real time.
If you are deeply engaged in doing any work that is not aligned or expectedly linked to the Strategy or the Purpose of the business, I would say you are engaged in APAR 'fake' work. Contrary Evidence : when the work you are doing is closely linked to the purpose and strategy, it will have potential to create Value. Efforts and energy invested in genuine work could lead to value creation. Apar work does not lead to value creation. Infact, it may distract others doing genuine work by causing doubts and anxiety.
Disaster to work under an APAR leader. He will disrupt your life .. you will generally experience calls during family time and events calling your urgent attention and engagement to do some seemingly critical work which later you realise was not at all important neither critical. Let me share some examples - the 8th Version of the proposal with language corrections to be done exactly as you were leaving for family event, the 85 voice messages he left, the 30 WApp instructions on new things he cooked up to be done last evening or presentation to some Chamber of Commerce etc.
Learn to differentiate between genuine work which sometimes may need your critical attention at awkward personal times and APAR work. But if you are ever caught up and pushed into this APAR Work trap, keep a record and track of it. Call it out gracefully with your Leader and let him be aware of your observations and particularly your records.
If you do not call out frequent APAR Work with your Manager, you will soon be disengaged, disconnected, demotivated and unfortunately, depressed sitting on that dreaded couch involved in therapy talking to your psychiatrist to manage your depressions.
(Why do I see you smiling .... chuckle !!!)