Productivity at work

You’re a professional. You know what you’re doing. You get results. But how is your workload looking lately? Regardless of how many times you wow your boss, you still end up taking your work home with you sometimes. And all the time you spend on that piece of cake project is starting to add up.

You might be confident of your work, or you might be more experienced than others, but that doesn’t mean you’re efficient. In the current fast-paced world, efficiency is key to getting many things done in a short amount of time. Not only does this increase productivity and reduce stress, it also gives you more free time. But how can you do more and be less stressed?

Here we go…

1. Plan ahead

Planning your day will help you accomplish a few things at once. Most importantly, you’ll prioritize your tasks, so it won’t be difficult to complete a C-level responsibility and still have time for an A-level project.

In order to be more efficient, you’ll need to compartmentalize your day and set goals. When you do this, you’ll find that you can accomplish more in a shorter time period. Make sure to reflect on what went right and what went wrong at the end of every day.

2. Overcome distractions

Distractions can be avoided if they are not ignored. The first step in beating them is to be aware of the distractions you have had. Every time you get distracted from work, write it down and what time it happened. One day, you will be able to identify your patterns and devise strategies to avoid them.

3. Time tracking

Once a week, it’s important to track your time and see how you spend it. For example, if you typically spend an hour on generating a report, but it took two hours today, you should try to figure out why. This way, you can gain insights into why certain tasks take more time than they should.

4. Acknowledge weaknesses

It should never be seen as a sign of inferiority to admit that you aren’t perfect at everything. If you know what your weaknesses are, you can work on them and get better. You might also want to delegate specific tasks or projects to people who do these better than you.

5. Take breaks

Being a creative thinker is a tough job. And when you’re forced to work through periods of extreme mental strain, it’s harder to be creative. That’s why breaks–short and long–are so important. A short break during the day will give you the mental relief you need and give your brain time to process all that you do.

6. Say no

American office culture can make some people feel uncomfortable when they need to say no. However, you should try it. Saying no is better than spreading yourself too thin and doing a bad job with 5 things, as opposed to 4 things done well. Your bosses, co-workers, clients, and partners will understand that.

7. Delegate and automate

Think of it this way: You’re just making your work easier. As more and more jobs are automated, you’ll notice that the software and tools you use to get your job done will take more time than you’re able to give. This is great! Just look for the right tools to streamline your process. And don’t be afraid to delegate some of your responsibilities to other people on your team–they’ll appreciate the opportunity to do their best work.

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