Our Top 5 Tips for Increasing Productivity at Work
Busy. That is a word that most of us would use to describe our lives and especially our days at work. But let me ask you, is your busyness actually getting you anywhere? Are you being PRODUCTIVE? Or do you feel as though it's just unnecessarily busy?
We all know that productivity can lead to profitability, growth, and success in your business, but the big question seems to be HOW can you be more productive? We decided to compile a list of five simple practices that you can implement TODAY to become more productive, and in turn, more successful.
1) Have a plan for the day!
At the beginning of each day, take the time to do what we call a “brain dump” of all the things you need/want to get done specifically for that day. Put all the ‘to-do’s swirling around in your mind to paper. Then look at that paper and arrange the tasks in order of importance. This will be your agenda for the day, getting those higher priority tasks completed first before moving on to those tasks that may not be as crucial to complete that day.
2) Quit multitasking!
While doing ‘all the things’ all at once may FEEL like you are being productive, you actually could be causing more stress and producing lower quality work. Studies have shown that it is actually MORE beneficial to commit all of your focus and energy to one task before moving on to the next. Your overall work performance and ability to retain information improves substantially when you are focusing on one task at a time.
3) Minimize distractions and interruptions!
We all know how quickly our mind can get pulled in different directions, causing us to lose focus and get off track. Whether it is your phone notifications, a talkative co-worker, the catchy music playing in your office, all of these seemingly small distractions can really delay your productivity. If you have an office to yourself, try closing the door, turning off the music, or switching it to something doesn’t cause your mind to wander (helloooo nature sounds on Pandora). Put your phone notifications on Do Not Disturb and set up exceptions so that only calls or texts from important individuals come through (family, child’s school, your boss, etc.).
4) Set mini goals/deadlines!
When you have an open-ended or long-term project, it may be hard to see the end in sight. You feel like you are “working” but not really getting anywhere or making any progress. One way to combat this and increase your productivity is by breaking large tasks into smaller ones and setting short-term goals for yourself. This can help you to stay on track and decrease feelings of being overwhelmed.
5) Take regular breaks!
You cannot just work, and work, and work, and work, and expect to be able to produce quality work. Think about professional athletes. Even they take breaks so they can regroup, refresh, and return, instead of running themselves ragged into the ground. Research has shown the same to be true in the workplace environment. Regular, short breaks, such as walking to a coffee shop down the street, or putting on your favorite song and stretching for 5 minutes, has been shown to improve concentration and help maintain a constant level of performance.
The next time you catch yourself overwhelmed by work, feeling stressed out from never taking a break, wanting to jump into tasks without a plan of action, or worse, multi-tasking, STOP! You will be wasting so much of your precious time and energy. Revisit this list, implement these practices, and you will see your productivity in the workplace increase!