What if you could amplify your productivity at work and get things done faster and smarter?
Greater productivity is there for the having--but many people just don’t know how to organize their day (or work space) to achieve it.
A 2008 NAPO survey revealed that 91% of surveyed consumers said their efficiency was strongly connected to their work space, and a more organized work space would do wonders to boost their effectiveness at work.
But physical clutter isn’t the only stressor and productivity inhibitor. Mental clutter can be just as devastating, or more, to your workday.
Want to boost your productivity? Start making these practices a part of your workday.
Optimize your commuting time
Instead of cranking on the music and drowning away for the next half hour, use it to take stock of the day, mentally organizing projects or thinking through what you want to say at the morning’s meeting. Or turn on an audio book about work, leadership or success to boost your mindset and get your revved for the day ahead so you can walk boldly into work instead of doing the morning shuffle.
Minimize or curb interruptions
Whether you work from home or in an office environment, interruptions are just waiting to happen. Designate your focus time by minimizing as many foreseeable interruptions as possible, such as mobile notifications. One study found that small interruptions to your workflow could end up costing you an average of 26 minutes as you try to get back on the right track.
Don’t fall prey to thinking you can do it all. That’s the fastest way to a stagnant work life. Learn to delegate work and entrust others with responsibility so you can focus on the things that really matter to your job.
Take regular breaks
Getting and staying organized isn’t just about your physical space. Often, it requires clearing the clutter in your brain by giving yourself some mental space for refreshment. Give yourself regular breaks in the day. Just 10-20 minutes (or a quick nap) every few hours could be enough to boost your brainpower, cut the stress and help you actually get things done.
Break up large projects
There’s nothing like feeling overwhelmed by a massive project to keep you staring blankly at the computer screen. Instead, chop up a project into smaller, bite-size chunks that you can accomplish and mark off the list. Not only will you feel massively productive with every line item you cross off the list, but you’ll be taking practical steps toward completing the big picture.
Organize your inbox
Email inboxes are the bane of every employee. Checking, reading through and looking for emails that came through once-upon-a-time could take up a significant portion of your day--time that you could be using more productively. Taking some time to clean your your inbox, create folders and rules to send certain emails directly to those folders, and unsubscribe from emails that just clutter your work inbox. Putting in a bit of time now could save you a good deal of time and frustration later.
Organize paper stacks with trays
Stacks of papers on your desk could quickly leave you feeling as lost in your mind as you do at your work space. Instead of sorting through papers trying to find your open projects and accounts, create a tray system that designates your Active projects, Inactive projects (anything pending activation or follow-up, leads, prospects, etc) and References. You’ll always know where to look to find what you need.
Use a checklist
When doing repetitive tasks, implementing a checklist system can help keep you on track, reduce errors and move you ever closer to project completion.