Staying organised, focused and disciplined at work can sometimes be a struggle, especially when it comes to staying on top of long-term tasks. Of course, we all have those moments when our plates are full, but we find ourselves getting distracted by social media, our favourite TV programmes or replying to emails, taking us away from the more urgent tasks.
Everyone has 24 hours in every day to balance and plan their time. However, some people do this more effectively than others. If you find yourself struggling to keep on top of your workload or you struggle to stay motivated, there are some tried and tested methods that can help you become more productive at work.
The principles of productively outlined below are some basic steps anyone at any level can implement into their lives to become more productive, efficient, and effective in any task they take on.
What is productivity in the workplace?
When we talk about productivity and being productive at work, we refer to the volume of meaningful and high-quality work being carried out. Productive workers achieve by spending less time on tasks that waste time and do not add value and instead work on projects that move them closer to the desired goal.
Unfortunately, it’s easy to get caught up with the small things that cause us to lose sight of the work that matters, which is where the principles of productivity could help your business.
Three principles of productivity
If you search the web, you will find many productivity principles, and they all have meaning. To keep things simple and achievable, we look at three core principles of productivity that anyone can incorporate into their life to become more productive and achieve more at work:
1. Prioritise your workload
It sounds obvious, but for many, it’s not as straightforward as it appears. When you work in a high-paced industry like iGaming, you’ll find your colleagues are looking for you to be flexible and adaptable with the never-ending inflow of new tasks. This makes it challenging to stay focused on one particular task.
When reviewing your workload, you should decide what’s important and create an action plan that allows you to take charge of the most critical tasks quickly and effectively. When prioritising, you should plan for the length of time you expect the task to take and how much you hope to achieve. Having an action plan further allows you to manage colleagues’ expectations when they ask for support on new projects. You will have a better idea of your availability due to your planning.
2. Time Management
Once you’ve prioritised your workload, you need to set aside time to get it done. During busy periods it can feel like time slips away far too quickly. But when you plan your time well, eight hours is ample time to get things done.
There are all kinds of time management tools and approaches employees can you to help manage time. For example, it could be splitting the day into chunks and giving yourself a specific time to complete a task.
Thinking ahead about how long a task might take will mean you have to think about any problems you might encounter in completing the job before you start. For example, if the task is to write up three reports, but you only have time to do two before the meeting, you can potentially allocate the third one to a colleague or find a workaround before it’s too late.
Some people find working in 25-minute cycles makes them more productive with regular five-minute breaks. Others may block out longer chunks of time to finish a task before taking a break.
3. Stay focused
Even when you prioritise your workload, it doesn’t mean you’ll automatically feel more focused and determined to get the job done without discipline and good time management. Even with the best intentions, it’s easy to get distracted and divert our efforts to less important tasks. It takes around 23 minutes to refocus once we have been distracted. Setting aside an hour or two can hugely impact your productivity.
Making a list of don’t-do tasks when you have set aside specific time can be a great way to stop yourself from doing things that hamper your productivity. Examples of this can be checking emails or social media or engaging in social chat with colleagues.
Productivity is fundamental to the success of any business. If you and your employees take the time to plan and prioritise, you will find your teams become more productive and move you closer to achieving your business goals.
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