There is a world of difference between being busy and being productive. Busyness does not necessarily mean that you are achieving anything meaningful for your employer.
You may have had the experience of being extremely busy but realizing, at the end of the work-day, that you had achieved almost nothing of lasting value. This short list of work hacks for more productivity will show you how to change that dramatically:
1. When you work, work.
We spend enormous amounts of time chatting to co-workers, hanging around water fountains or shooting the breeze with friends on social media. You will literally save days every month by avoiding this kind of time-wasting like the plague.
When co-workers want to chat about non-work-related trivialities you need to be very firm. Be polite but be firm and let them know that you need to work. You will be amazed at how much more you get done and how much quicker you get noticed as a quality employee.
2. Stay with a task
This is backed by solid psychological research. When you put a task on hold while picking up a second, third, and fourth, your mind becomes scattered. You never give your full attention to any single task and you ultimately produce less than the best of what you are capable.
The ‘open loops’ of the unfinished, in-progress tasks clutter up your thinking even though you may not be consciously aware of this. Moreover, this wastes great amounts of time because when you return to an unfinished task it can take a while to get fully re-engaged and up-to-speed with it.
3. Start a little earlier, stay a little later
This is so obvious, yet it’s practiced by so few employees. The habit of getting to the office thirty minutes to an hour earlier will do wonders for your productivity. Catch up on correspondence, read professional literature or simply de-clutter your desk and your mind before the day gets momentum and you have to start putting out fires.
Then once the day is over, stay a little later to plan the following day. These two habits alone will ensure that you become much more productive than before!
There exists a vast amount of literature about being more productive at work. The old cliché “Leaders are readers” still holds very true. Find out who the best authors are and read, read, read. You will become inspired and motivated by reading as little as fifteen minutes every day.
All of the great successes in the world today are voracious readers. It is a fatal mistake to think that you can learn nothing of value from books and you owe it to yourself to become a reader in your chosen field.
5. Time Management
Become very good at managing your time. Daunting as this may sound; it is actually easier than you may think. Bookslike David Allen’s classic “Getting Things Done” will supply you with proven methods for making the most out of literally every minute of the day.
Effective time management is a crucial business skill no serious employee can afford not to develop.
Following these points will make your day seem like a breeze because, like Napoleon on the battlefield, you will be able to handle any challenge you are confronted with.