Copyright ©2012 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business is...

(SOUNDBITE OF SLAP)

INSKEEP: Ow!

Plenty of people procrastinate at work, especially when you can so easily drift off course, on the Internet. But Maneesh Sethi came up with a solution. He runs a website called Hack the System; and often works alone, in front of his computer. He tended to drift from his work, checking Facebook or looking at blogs. So he did this...

MANEESH SETHI: And so I used my slapper, in this case, just basically to keep me on track. I gave her a list of what I should do and anytime I started to diverge, she would just prevent me from doing so.

INSKEEP: "I used my slapper," he says. Mr. Sethi hired a person to sit with him while he works, and slap him when he starts to drift. Now, you may think this is a joke or he's doing it for kicks, but it's not.

SETHI: I think it's funny, and fun; and I don't think it hurts. It's all about like, experimenting in different ways to monitor and improve your productivity - because you have to create a system, or an environment around you, that supports you in your like, productive efforts.

INSKEEP: Now, Mr. Sethi's first slapper was a woman he found on Craigslist. Later, he employed a 6-foot-3 Swedish man who hits a little harder, we're told. Sethi does use a computer program to monitor his activity, and he says his slappers have boosted his productivity by 98 percent - which must be worth a high-five.

And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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