If you have problems getting things done at the office, don’t worry — you’re not alone. An average employee can spend up to three hours of their workday not working. The reasons for this are numerous and range from a loud environment to a general lack of interest in their tasks.
However, procrastination is a huge problem, and it can cause you to fall behind on your tasks significantly. The good thing is that it is solvable. Anyone can learn how to be more productive — it’s just a matter of figuring out some useful techniques and methods.
Focus on One Task at a Time
No matter how good you think you are at multitasking, the harsh truth is — no one can do it successfully. In order to finish a task, you need to give it your undivided attention. However, if you’re split between several activities at the same time, you’re not really getting any one of them done.
It’s crucial to only do one thing at a time. If you’re working on one project, but then you’re constantly interrupted by emails, texts, colleagues, questions, and other things, it will take you forever to finish. Moreover, there will probably be plenty of mistakes because of your lack of focus.
Distractions are the number one killer of productivity at the office. The main ones are probably your colleagues and your phone. It’s great that you are friendly at work and enjoy your coworkers’ company, but you should minimize chatter while working.
If possible, don’t keep your phone on your desk. That way, your attention won’t fly through the window with every new text or notification. You’ll also be less tempted to check your social media accounts every once in a while.
Instead, allocate a bit of time every day when you can indulge in your distractions freely. Even if it’s newbies asking for your help, make sure to set boundaries and let them know when they can reach out to you.
Keep Your Workspace Organized
You’ve probably heard that a messy room equals a messy mind. It has been proven that a disorganized environment drains our cognitive abilities. That’s why it’s essential that you keep your workstation neat and organized.
Of course, your office should be a pleasant space too. If that’s not the case, you could make some suggestions as to how that could be changed. Maybe it’s too dreary, so you could use a splash of color and some plants. Maybe there’s a better way to arrange the desks.
Don’t be afraid to make these suggestions as they can affect everyone’s productivity and well-being at the office.
Automate Repetitive and Time-Consuming Tasks
If you can avoid dull and repetitive tasks, do so at all costs. If you can’t, find the best way to spend as little time as possible on them. Thanks to various software applications, there are many tasks that you can automate instead of doing them over and again.
For example, smart AI assistants can engage with customers on many levels, from onboarding to retention, while you remain free to deal with more complex issues. This AI-based solution could make your productivity go through the roof.
No matter what annoying repetitive task you’re dealing with, there’s probably a way to automate it.
Prioritize Your Responsibilities
Staying organized is key to being productive. If your thoughts are all over the place about what you need to do that day, you’ll find it hard to focus on one thing. All the other things will be buzzing around your mind, fighting for your attention, and causing you anxiety.
Before you even begin to work, you need to prioritize your tasks and do them in the order of their importance. Sometimes, everything seems equally urgent, but there are ways to discern what you should do first.
Once you know your priorities, do the most important things first because that will take a lot of weight off your chest and help you stay on top of your responsibilities.
Practice Time Management
Maybe you’re one of those people who are in a constant battle with time and can’t seem to make it work for them ever. The truth is, time management is not a talent — it is a highly learnable skill that everyone can gain with a little bit of practice.
So you need to be aware of how much time you need for each task approximately. You’ve probably done similar activities many times already, so you might have a clear picture of how long it takes you to finish them.
Plan your daily activities at work with that in mind. Making your tasks time-bound will help you focus on them.
Schedule Small Breaks
You probably have a designated time slot for a lunch break, which is your longest break at work. However, it’s important to take several shorter ones throughout your workday. Instead of spending all your time half-working and half-checking your Instagram, you should focus on work and schedule small breaks every here and there as rewards and opportunities to relax.
It’s also vital not to take these little breaks randomly. That way, you’ll end up having one whenever there’s a tough task or a problem that you’re struggling to solve. On the other hand, if you schedule these breaks, you’ll have an incentive to do as much as you can before you come up for air.
Don’t Take on More Than You Can Handle
If you follow all the tips we have mentioned above, hopefully, you’ll get a pretty clear picture of how much work you can handle in a day. You’ll learn exactly how much time you need for which task and how many tasks are not too many.
So respect your boundaries and don’t do more than you’re comfortable with. Sure, we can all cram in another activity of two if need be, but that doesn’t mean we should. Doing this all the time will only lead to burnout.
The stress of knowing how much you have to accomplish in one day can also paralyze you to the point of managing to do even less than you thought you could.