Every work environment has its own unique distractions. From the noisy open plan work environments at many companies, to the lure of the fridge/sofa/television for countless home-based workers, it would seem that it’s very difficult for the modern worker to be as productive as they should be.
With that in mind, and provided that this article isn’t distracting you from your work, here are seven excellent ways to increase workplace productivity.
1. Treat yourself well
It makes perfect sense. By treating yourself well, you’ll be better able to focus upon your work, limit the distractions in your workplace environment, and, more than likely, get along much better with your colleagues and co-workers no matter how noisy they might be at times.
Treating yourself well doesn’t mean enjoying grand lunches and shopping expeditions but rather eating breakfast, getting ample sleep, exercising regularly, limiting your caffeine intake, drinking plenty of water, and getting outside at least a couple of times a day – if only for a few minutes at a time. Plus, the walk outside will do you good – sedentary work does no one’s health any favors.
2. Limit multitasking
It seems like a skill every modern worker is expected to possess, but countless studies show time and time again that multitasking can actually limit productivity. Granted, there are times when you’ll need to multitask, and to be honest, it doesn’t look good if you get flustered whilst trying to talk on the phone and perform another simple task simultaneously. So, where possible, focus on one thing at a time.
Moreover, if you’re not sure how or why multitasking hurts your performance at work, take a look at this link.
3. Keep social media to a minimum
There’s no excuse from checking your social media accounts at work unless it’s actually for work (for example, interacting with clients as part of a social media strategy). Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn, are all distractions that prevent you from concentrating on what you should be doing, and should be avoided. Check them on your lunch break or even when you first turn on your computer. After that, try to ignore them for the remainder of the day.
4. Keep your desk neat and tidy
Whether it’s the first thing you do in the morning or the last thing you do in the evening before leaving your offices, make it a daily ritual to tidy your desk. You’ve probably heard the saying ‘Tidy desk, tidy mind,’ and it’s true – a tidy desk helps to clear the mind by aiding concentration. Plus, with piles of paper and God-only-knows-what-else to rummage through, it’s hard to deny that a messy desk is hardly conducive to productivity.
5. Sort your email
Depending on your job, email can become a distraction, especially if the majority of emails you receive aren’t specifically for your benefit. It’s also important to arrange your inbox folders categorically; otherwise referring back to old emails can become a tedious nightmare after you’ve been with a company for a few years and have thousands of emails in your inbox.
6. Break down big tasks to make them more manageable
Productivity and organization are inextricably linked it would seem. If you have a large, foreboding project at work, look for ways to break it down into more manageable chunks with the aim of tackling one at a time. Some find that by breaking down large projects into smaller tasks, they can keep better track of their progress with a sense of achievement as they tick each task off the list.
7. Take note of what the people you admire have to say
What do the successful people you admire do? It’s surprising what some of the most successful people do to stay productive and chances are you’ll gain some excellent insights from their methods. Here are a few:
Richard Branson – “Work out.”
Arianna Huffington – “My single most effective trick for getting things done is to stop doing what I’m doing and get some sleep.”
Stephen King – “Write every day.”
Food for thought!
This post was originally published at an earlier date.
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