One of the hardest things to handle at work is the constant pinging, poking, and the constant multitasking. Frankly, it is distracting, and a huge drain on productivity. So, what are some ways that I ensure that I can focus on what I need to do, and improve my productivity?
Here are Some Simple Tips to Improve Productivity
- Turn off the audible and visible email notifications. Chances are, if you’re anything like me, you get a bazillion emails a day. Maybe more. So, how are you supposed to concentrate if there are constant new mail! notifications? Turn them off. Email is not a synchronous form of communication like conversation, and you can ignore emails for a little while.
- Check Email a few times per day. At most, you should check it 2-3 times per day. Ignore it the rest of the time. Make a point of checking email at particular points in time, and ignoring it while you’re trying to do other things. People will not be upset that it took you 2 hours to respond to an email, and your productivity will increase correspondingly.
- Do not bring your laptop to a meeting. Frankly, there are very few things that are more irritating to me than going to an “important” meeting, and seeing everyone there listening with a half ear. It is impossible to do two things at the same time. You can either listen, or work on your laptop. You can’t do both.
- Be fully present. Make a point of being fully present on whatever it is that you’re working on, at any given point in time. Put the gizmos and gadgets away. If you need to take notes, do. Focus hard on what you are doing. It will go much faster that way, than trying to do 3 things at once.
- Take care of your body. Eat when you need to eat. Do not skip lunch. Exercise. Take regular breaks, stretch, move about, and get your blood flowing. You will find that you have more energy and are able to focus better.
- Take care of tasks promptly, and get them off your plate. No procrastinating. Get stuff done that needs to be done. One task at a time.
- Multitasking does not work. Ever tried to do three things at once? What happened? Did you get lost? Confused? Did you get befuddled trying to figure out where one thing stopped, and the other started? That’s because true multitasking doesn’t work. At least for me, true multitasking means about 6 things half, done, and no end in sight.
These are the things I do to improve productivity, but I’m sure that you have plenty of ideas, and suggestions. What are yours?