There are only 24 hours in each day, so making the most of your work time is essential to free you up NOT to work. There are 2 ways increase your work output – either put in more work hours or work smarter – I prefer to be Smarter, don’t you?
Being more Productive at work isn’t like splitting the atom, but it does require you to be more thoughtful, more deliberate and actually plan how you spend your time to work rest and play. So, below are some simple & effective ideas for increasing your own Productivity at work.
1. Use your commuting time to plan your day
Use your commute time much more constructively, to respond to emails, create a daily To-Do list, or some brainstorming if you are on Public Transport – especially useful for managing any delays.
2. Gift yourself a working environment that works for you
By fitting out your office or home work space with visually pleasing elements, you can increase your productivity by up to 10-15% or an extra hour per day. This can mean using your own colours, plants or photos in your work space – anything that puts a smile on your face and triggers a smile.
3. Set self-imposed deadlines each day
While we usually think of a stress as a bad thing, a manageable level of (self-imposed) stress can actually be practical in terms of giving focus and helping meet your daily goals. For longer, open-ended tasks or Projects, break them down into monthly, or weekly, sub-objectives that give you realistic deadlines to work to and stick to them. You may be surprised to discover just how much more focused and productive you can be when you’re watching the clock.
4. Work in 60 minute intervals
Set your timer and work at intervals of 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, get up and walk around, talk to colleagues, make a coffee, have a comfort break or snack, to uplug. If you are working at home, try doing one household chore every hour. You’ll notice you are more productive after each break.
5. Break down large projects into bite-sized segments
Working on a large, time consuming project? Break it down into bite-size segments and set yourself mini targets. If they still don’t seem achievable / realistic, break it down further until you feel they are feasible, when you complete each segment.
6. Be Proactive, not Reactive
Don’t let incoming other people (via phone calls/emails) dictate how you spend your day, create your own To-Do list every day and ensure you do that. Set aside a block of time for responding to urgent emails or even better, delegate them.
7. Say no to meetings
Meetings are often the biggest waste of time, yet we still continue go to them and complain about them. Before accepting your next meeting invite, ask yourself whether you need to meet – could you all accomplish the same goal or task via email, phone, or web-based meeting from your office?
8. Walking and standing meetings
Walking meetings are great for socials, 121 catch ups and a fantastic way to incorporate simple activity into your workday. Short, focused, standing meetings surprisingly encourage creativity and collaboration. They also promote better engagement, increased sharing of information and ideas. Plus the physical benefit of a standing meeting puts less stress and strain on the body caused by sitting for long periods of time.
9. Magic 15 minutes
Create that 15 minutes in each day as your Magic time, when you are really focussed, probably in the morning, to see just how much you can achieve in that time. Dedicate 15 minutes in each day, or use that dead time before you decide to break for lunch or after lunch, making that your magic time.
If you would to understand more about how to measure and improve your business productivity and where the quick productivity gains are to be had, please contact me John Mather at EMC Associates. I offer a FREE initial consultation to understand more about your business and your productivity pain points!