5 Ways to Increase Productivity at Work
"I don't have enough time. I'm too stressed out. I have so much on. How can I fit all this work into 8 hours? I just cannot do it!"
We are asked these questions pretty regularly so we thought we'd compile a list and share with you some of our best tips on how to work better and smarter. Yes, smarter. A lot of people confuse productivity in the office with working harder and producing more work in less hours. While some of that is true and wouldn't we all want to achieve more in less time, true productivity boils down to working smarter.
Plan your day
Start each day by writing a list of no more than 5 tasks that you will complete that day. Any more than this is likely to remain uncompleted and will only add to your stress. Instead of fire-fighting you are planning out your day and setting achievable goals which you can tick off as you finish each one - and who doesn't like ticking off a list eh? Oh the satisfaction.
Identify your time thieves
Think about your day as a whole, where do you waste the most time or feel that you could cut down time to be more productive? Is it meaningless meetings when someone could send you the minutes instead, or are you carrying other colleagues monkeys (learn to say no); Procrastination? Time management? Once you identify your biggest thief you can work on a plan to eliminate this and get back on track for producing your wonderful work - on time!
Turn off notifications
Stop email notifications from popping up and set aside time to check your emails instead say, once every hour or so. This will stop you reacting to each individual email that crops up and interrupting your priorities for the day. You will feel more in control and able to get back to focusing on your list again (tick, tick).
Focus on one task at a time
We are a mass culture of multitasking and the more tasks we can juggle, the better we feel - right? Well, here at Call a PA we're here to shout STOP! You need to focus on each task separately before moving onto the next one. Why? Research shows that multitasking actually wastes time as your brain has a hard time switching from task to task and you actually become slower at what you're doing.
Yep that's right, think productively! Ask yourself, do you sit there thinking:
I am so overwhelmed...
I cannot do this, I'm too stressed...
I have too much on...
If so I have good news; change your mindset. Start thinking of solutions of how you can prioritise your work based on the tips above, or use them as guides to mold them to your situation.
I need to proritise x and y first
Can I delegate work or change deadlines?
What can I do / change to achieve the outcomes?
Changing your mindset does take time and practice but once it's a habit you will be amazed by the results and how much calmer you will feel. You can do this!
What other smart ways of working do you use at work? Let us know in the comments below :)