The latest news and advice from our recruitment experts.
It can be an everyday battle to try and complete that mountain of jobs piled on your desk. Many think that in order to achieve more and increase productivity you will need to spend more hours chained to your job, seeing less of those you love and doing less of what you love - with eventually your job ruling your life. Thankfully this is not the case!
And because we know that everyone wants to improve their productivity and achieve more, we have put together five tips to help you work smarter, more efficiently and boost your productivity.
Tip 1: Stop Multi-Tasking
A few weeks back we published a blog on Achieving a State of Flow in your working environment, and in order to do this, a sole focus should be on the task at hand, without interruption. By having a singular focus when completing any task will ensure that it is done more efficiently, thus achieving greater results and will increase your productivity. So switch off any unnecessary external influences such as social media, messaging, and emails.
Tip 2: Be Technologically Savvy
“We’re changing the world with technology” – Bill Gates.
Use the technology that is around you to your advantage – no more paper ‘to do’ lists, or piles of paper work. Make the most of devices such as computers, laptops, tablets, smart phones, cloud computing and hard drives to compile and store all this information for you, in a portable, easy access format. There are numerous programmes that are available for you to install on any number of devices to help organise your daily activities – an example of this could be the Gantt Chart. The Gantt Chart is a great way to help you organise your day into a working structure; that is able to be broken down for you to measure how long each activity potentially may last, importance - according to due dates/time, and how you see fit to incorporate other activities that are pertinent.
Tip 3: Be Your own Instruction Manual
There is no set way to get something done, and the best way to complete the task will be different for everyone. There is no point following someone else’s rules when they don’t work for you. Set up your own schedule and guidelines to use, so that all tasks are performed and completed effectively and efficiently.
Lack of consistency and uniformity will not aid in achieving long-term goals, therefore by having your own system in place may help you reach these goals. It is noted that besides having a constant interruption of some sort, checking messages of any kind can account for a lot of valuable time wasted - and interrupt your flow of work. Setting aside specific times during the day to check and respond to these requests will ensure you maximise your focus when completing other tasks.
For example, set aside three times a day to receive and respond to these requests; on arrival, after lunch and mid afternoon. Because if you are on a role where strategic thinking and creativity is required, your headspace will be essential in achieving peak performance results.
Tip 4: Take Frequent Breaks.
You know that feeling like you’ve been plugging away at something for hours, and seem to be getting nowhere? Well this feeling is a road block, and will do nothing for your motivation when trying to complete a task to the best of your ability. Taking time to stretch your legs and fill your lungs with fresh air will give your body a revitalised view of the task at hand – the key is to have a change of scenery i.e. away from your desk or work area, these are often known as ‘brain breaks’. These small, frequent breaks have been shown to improve mental alertness, by moving more oxygen around the body, reducing fatigue, relieving joint or muscle pain, and increase overall alertness.
Tip 5: Share Responsibility
Interestingly, a lot of people find sharing the responsibility of something that they have been entrusted difficult to do, and when forced to do it they micro-manage every aspect of it, in turn causing more strain and stress than there needs to be. Contrary to popular belief, teamwork is not only a group process, but rather a personal responsibility. This skill set includes several people performing their tasks adequately, as individuals and as well as a team. To do this, you must be trusting and willing to accept others decisions, because this power of an individual to make or break collaborative relationships is huge.
These five tips outline a series of small changes that you can make to ensure that you work smarter, more efficiently and boost your productivity. Making practical the old saying, “work smarter, not harder”, to increase productivity and still ensure that you are incredibly successful at work, and managing to enjoy and have a life outside of your job.