Some things are universally true, and when it comes to business, time is money; this means that productivity is the key to growing your business or meeting your life goals. With that in mind, why not use the productivity strategies below to increase the value of your working day and make your time go further.
The Power of Goal Setting
Some people are super busy all the time but don’t seem to progress their business or project, while others seem to have little to do even though their business is a roaring success. The difference is in the way people set goals for themselves and how those goals bring success.
If you don’t know why you are working on repetitive tasks, it’s time to find out what the big picture of your company or your life goal is? Spend time brainstorming end goals for your business or lifestyle and find out how your daily tasks are contributing to this end, then make changes.
Frontload Daily Tasks
Frontloading your daily tasks means tackling the most difficult and least enjoyable tasks first thing and leaving the easier ones until later on. Although everyone is different most people have more energy in the morning; we tend to be more alert as well and produce better outcomes.
Although it can be tempting to check emails and messages in the morning, try to turn off all of your distractions and work solidly for a few hours. It helps if you set yourself a time limit or promise yourself a reward when you get to the end of it. After that, the rest of the day is easy.
Review the Week
Most people live in the present and the future; after all, life is continually moving forward, and there’s little point in thinking about tasks you have completed in the past, but that’s where you might miss a trick because a weekly review of completed tasks can reveal unseen opportunities.
Productivity experts recommend keeping a diary of tasks and reviewing it at the end of the week; you’re looking for the answers to three questions, did I achieve what I set out to achieve, did I need to attend to everything, and could tasks have been completed in a shorter time?
Productive Times of Day
Again, the most productive time of the day is different for everyone, but one thing is certain, everyone has a time of the day when they are most productive. It might be in the early morning after a restful sleep, after lunch, or in the evening. It’s important to recognize personal patterns.
Once you know your energy patterns, you can optimize your day around them; for instance, you might decide to work through your lunch break in the interest of getting ahead with your schedule and taking a rest in the early afternoon instead. Or allow yourself a slower morning.
The Five Minute Rule
Have you ever delayed a task because it seemed boring or overwhelming? If you’re like most people starting repetitive tasks daily is one of the reasons we prefer to stay in bed or procrastinate on social media, but there’s a neat trick that can get you back to work easily.
It’s called the five-minute rule, and it works! If you are struggling to get started with a task, you need to re-frame your mindset. Tell yourself you are only going to do five minutes of it, that’s enough to get you started, and once you’re going, there’s no stopping you; it gets finished.
When we tell ourselves or our co-workers we don’t have time to complete a task, what we really mean is the task is not important enough right now to work on. Chances are you would find time for the task if you were offered more money for it, so it’s simply a case of getting priorities right.
If you want to improve your productivity and grow your business, you should have a list of priorities and act on them. Leasing is one example, it’s sometimes more cost-effective to lease company infrastructure but the processes have to be tightly controlled – read more about leasing and find out how non-ownerships can improve your bottom line.
Set Some Boundaries
Whether you work from home or in a conventional office, there are always people in the day demanding your time and attention. In the office, it could be someone coming over to your desk to chat about the weekend, while in your home, you might be distracted by your family members.
If you want to improve your productivity, it’s time to set some boundaries. We all know that focusing on one task is more productive than multi-tasking, so set your boundaries around what you need to achieve, and don’t be afraid to communicate this with others and get back to work.
Naturally, procrastination is the enemy of productivity, but unfortunately, it’s also the easiest way to get distracted even during the most productive times of your day. This is something you need to take seriously if you want to get ahead, so turn everything off when you’re in your work mode.
While working, it’s very easy to become distracted and to start thinking about an email you’re waiting for or a chat you’re involved in; the temptation is there to visit your emails or chats by; it’s best to train yourself against these impulses and to focus instead on the task at hand.
Control Email Checking
Emails are another enemy to productivity; not only do they draw your attention away from what you’re working on, but they demand more of your attention after you’ve checked them. Chances are you will have to respond, which gets you thinking about something else and distracts you.
Nowadays, email is not the only mode of business communication; there are chat facilities and digital workstations that provide more direct messages and are excellent for quick updates. If you find you are bogged down in emails, consider streamlining things with other technologies.