When it comes to making the most of your time at work, it’s not just about choosing the right productivity apps. Truly productive people know how to accomplish more within the constraints of time, space, and resources. With these tricks, you can be everywhere at once — or at least make it seem like you are.
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1. Scrum Meet-Up
Whether you’re a small group of dedicated co-workers or a huge team, you will all be more productive if you set aside time to meet and discuss projects, tasks, needs, and successes. It’s a great way to get everyone motivated (and even excited) about what they’re working on. It’s always important to make sure the meetings are on-task, succinct, and unencumbered by irrelevant details. If meeting are taking more than 30 minutes, re-evaluate how you’re structuring the meetings, and consider breaking them into smaller “team” meetings, so that each employee will get the greatest benefit from each session.
2. Close the Door
You may have heard of the “open-door policy,” and it’s great to make the workplace welcoming, with the attitude that employees have a voice — both with each other, and with the boss. However, no matter how friendly an office environment may be, there comes a time when you need to close the door, turn off the ringer, and send out a memo that interruptions are to kept to a minimum.
Chris Green, CEO at Saratoga Roofing, told Inc: “We find that when employees have an expectation of not being able to disturb or be disturbed by others at set times of the day, they work harder to figure out things on their own and they are far more productive.”
3. Be More Alert
If you haven’t slept and you’re so exhausted that you’re barely able to function, you will not be productive. Fortunately, there are a number of tips for how you can get through a sleep-deprived day.
Just know that these tricks will only work for so long. Sooner or later, you’re going to have to build in more time to rest and exercise, or your productivity, as well as your health, will suffer.
“If you spend more than 8-10 hours at a desk and without moving around much, then you will notice that you have less energy,” writes Amit Chowdhry at Forbes, “Productivity is not measured by the number of hours you sit at a desk. It is measured by how much you get done without sacrificing your health.”
4. Map It Out
Tired of hearing about how you should plan ahead? Adopt a more geographical mindset, and map it out. Determine what you need to accomplish in the upcoming week, and where, when, and how you’ll do it. Figure this out before Monday rolls around, and you disappear into a series of meetings and other people’s priorities.
5. Stop Multitasking
You’ve probably seen all the job-descriptions that ask for a “multitasker,” or the “ability to handle multiple tasks and responsibilities.” They may have even asked how good you are at it when you interviewed for your position. In fact, it’s nearly impossible for most people to concentrate on more than one thing at a time and do anything well.
“Multitasking is a personal-productivity killer,” writes Jeff Haden at Inc. “Don’t try to do two things partly well. Do one thing really well.”
Most of these secrets are ideas that you’ve probably thought about before. You may have even tried to implement some of them. But, the greatest secret of all is consistency. If you decide to implement these productivity techniques, you must stick with them, get buy-in and support from your co-workers and employees, and build from that basic foundation.
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