Being able to reach your goals faster, being better organised, managing and controlling your time, improving your results… A lot of positive things come from being more productive. But how can you become more productive at work?
Tidy up your desk.
We keep saying it, but a tidy and orderly desk is the first step towards productivity. You don’t get lost in all the clutter, you find the important paper faster, you feel freer and less overwhelmed by work.
Everyone has their own way of tidying their desk. It’s important to sort your things, check that you have pens that work (nothing more annoying than looking for the one that works), put away your chargers and cables to air out your space. After that, everyone is free to choose: a pile of important papers on your desk, stored (or rather hidden) in your drawer… .
Prioritise your tasks.
It can be important to analyse your tasks carefully. You will be able to see what is going to take you time and what is not. This way you can choose when it is more appropriate to do one thing rather than another. For example, try not to start something that will take hours at the end of the day. You will have to start again the next day and you will not be on the same track.
In fact, it is advisable to start in the morning with the most important task of the day. This is called eating a frog in the morning. Concentrate your efforts on the most important task, don’t do everything at the same time. Then take the time to appreciate your results.
Automate your tasks.
“The counter-intuitive secret to being more efficient is to make things automatic, so that they take less time,” writes Tony Schwartz in the Harvard Business Review.”
So part of the secret is to automate tasks. Build in rituals, like coffee as soon as you arrive at work. Create routines for your work.
The main goal is to do things automatically and not to think too much about unnecessary or frivolous tasks.
Limit interruptions to have a more productive work.
What could be less productive than being interrupted while working? Whether it’s a colleague, a phone call or an e-mail, it can take time to refocus. On average, it takes 64 seconds for a worker to refocus on his or her work after receiving an e-mail (ORSE). And it’s even worse if the email is not useful. It is therefore important to limit the number of interruptions to those that are work-related.
Start by putting your phone on silent, or even turning it off if you are not expecting an important call. Move it away from you so you’re not tempted to look at your screen as soon as you receive a notification.
Clean up your email inbox. It’s important to delete what you don’t want and keep only the essentials, both in life and at work. Consider deleting unnecessary emails and unsubscribing from newsletters you don’t want to receive. This can save you time from having to sort through your emails every day. You can also look into making your mailbox optimal for business purposes.
Remember to take breaks, they don’t make work less productive !
Concentrating on the same thing for hours without looking up is not good or productive. This is even more recommended for those working with a computer. In addition to the health benefits (relieving eye pressure, walking so as not to keep a bad posture and damage your back,…).
So, in order not to be overwhelmed by the fatigue and stress of being stuck on a task, it is important to take a break. The ideal rhythm would be to take a 17-minute break after 52 minutes of work.
But be careful not to overdo it. This could have the opposite effect.
And finally, prepare your day the day before.
What could be better than arriving at work in the morning already knowing what to do and when to do it in the day! It’s a big time saver in a day. You don’t have to think about what you need to do at the beginning and this helps you to automate your tasks. When you know what to do, we don’t think and do it. And then you will sleep more peacefully in the evening.
Now you’re ready to achieve a higher level of productivity. Be careful, it is sometimes very motivating to follow these tips to increase productivity, but it is just as important to stay on your game and not let up!