Office distractions are all around us. And they are getting increasingly more difficult to tune out. There are so many ways our boss, customers and teammates can reach us to break our focus, it makes it challenging to get things done. Related: 7 Ways To Stay Productive At Work Maybe this is why we are all so very busy each and every day. It makes it challenging to get anything done. You get emails, texts, phone calls all day long for so many different people. There are countless meetings on the schedule, so much so that when you are done with calls and meetings it seems you have two hours to get eight hours of work done and mathematically, that just isn’t going to work. Despite all of the demands and distractions, there are ways to tune them out when you have to get something done. They are not easy and some of them are not for the faint of heart (#1), but I can attest, that these do work. When emails and browsers and phones are on, I get less done. When I am not thoughtful about my plan for the week, I am less focused and productive and when I spend too much time chit-chatting with my boss, clients, or co-workers, I am sure to not meet my missions for the week. When I am on deadline with something, I am more rigid with this list. When I have more free time, I am less rigid. It’s not perfect, but I can tell you that it works. The first three usually make people shudder (especially the people on my team with two monitors!). But nonetheless, it is important to know what you can do to tune out some of those pesky office distractions. And by the way, it is not rude to have your door closed… Just sayin'.
Everyone needs to feel their voice is heard and their contributions are important. Something as simple as sharing a drink the last hour of the day on a Friday with the team to recap wins and give praise can build camaraderie within the team.
All of the above are fairly simple to implement but can make a huge difference in morale and motivation. Have any of these tips worked well for young the past? Do you have other tips to motivate your creative team? If so, please share them with me!
Encourage curiosity. Spark debate. Stimulate creativity and your team will be better at handling challenges with flexibility and resourcefulness. Create a safe space for ideas, all ideas, to be heard. In ideation, we need the weird and off-the-wall ideas to spur us on to push through to the great ideas.
Sure, there are a ton of studies done on this, but here is my very unscientific personal take. When team members can make decisions about how they work on projects, they are more engaged and connected to the project outcome. When they see how potentially dropping the ball would affect the entire team, they step up. When they feel like what they are doing is impactful and valued, they are naturally motivated to learn more, and be even better team members.
Rarely does a one-size-fits-all style work when it comes to team motivation. I have found that aligning employee goals with organization goals works well. Taking time to get to know everyone on your team is invaluable. What parts of their job do they love? What do they not enjoy? What skills do they want to learn? Even going so far as to where they see themselves in five years career-wise. These questions help you right-fit projects, and help your team see you are committed to creating a career path for them within the company.
Most designers I know love a good challenge. We are problem solvers by nature. Consistently give yourself and your team small challenges, both design-related and not. It will promote openness within the team to collaborate, and it will help generate ideas faster in the long run. Whether the challenge is to find a more exciting way to present an idea to stakeholders or fitting a new tool into the budget, make it a challenge just to shake things up.