Productivity at work has become one of the most important and talked-about things in the corporate world. In this era of global business and competition, productivity at work defines how flexible and responsive a company is to the demands of the customer.
A company with low productivity at work is bound to fall short on customers’ expectations and be slow in responding to their needs. Therefore, it is of paramount importance that productivity at work is maximized, so that deadlines are met, needs fulfilled and revenue increased.
Every person is productive to varying extents. Moreover, every person has tried to increase his productivity at work, at some point of his professional career. There are many ways that productivity at work can be increased. A few of them are explained below.
There are many simple things, which if avoided, are likely to boost the productivity at work. One of the most basic activity that all of us do is check email frequently. While some people check it twice an hour, others check it every ten minutes. Checking email frequently is, actually, counterproductive.
Why? Because it tends to distract us from the task, we are currently working on. Apart from distracting us, they also tend to force us to revise our day’s plans as frequently as we check emails. Furthermore, checking emails reduce our productivity at work by wasting our time whenever we check an email, even though it takes only five minutes or less. It is advised to check emails only thrice daily: once in the morning, once before lunch and, finally, before leaving work.
Another approach may be to check emails once in the morning, answer all pending requirements within two hours and, get to work on the normal activities. After that, the email can be checked once again, before leaving for home, to get a sense of the amount of work that waits for the next day.
Another way to increase productivity at work is to reduce the number of meetings held in a week. Some meetings are important, and cannot be avoided. However, some meetings make no sense like meetings whose content could have been discussed over email.
For example, a project status meeting does not have to be held twice a week, just to discuss the status of every activity. Instead, the team members can use a project management tool that monitors the progress of a project with regular reports and visual pictographs.
All those involved in a project should use this tool.With this, each member is aware of the project status, and the need for such insignificant meetings is avoided, thus saving time and increasing productivity of every member of the team.
Another way to increase productivity at work is to refrain from small talk. All of us have seen people who will walk to our workstation just to talk about some Tom, Dick and Harry in the other department, or about how their date last night did not go well. It is important to stop these conversations before they even begin.
These type of discussions always waste time and are irrelevant to our daily work life. To increase productivity at work, it is important to, very politely, ask the other person to hold the thought till lunch time, since there is an important deadline that has to be met.
Unless an individual learns to silence the other person, respectfully of course, he will not be able to increase his productivity at work.
Multitasking is a double-edged sword. Multitasking has countless benefits for a person, like completing more tasks within a given time and working more efficiently. It, however, also has countless setbacks, if not used properly. People who believe they can do certain tasks in the same time, without any mistakes, should only practice multitasking.
People who lack multitasking skills are bound to make mistakes when they perform multiple activities at the same time. They will then be required to repeat the task and rectify the mistake. Therefore, instead of reducing time, multitasking can actually increase the time required to complete a certain number of tasks. This causes frustration, wastes time and decreases productivity at work.
Finally, the last way to increase productivity at work is by maintaining a To-Do list. This is one of the most important, simplest and, yet, extremely effective tool to increase the productivity at work. The To-Do list for the day should be created the day before, when leaving for home.
This will, again, help in determining the kind of day that awaits you. The To-Do list should be followed religiously to ensure that productivity at work is increased. It would make no sense to maintain a To-Do list, if it is regularly disrespected and tasks are added in the middle.
Although increasing productivity at work is a big deal nowadays, it should not be taken more seriously than personal health. It is important to prioritize what is important and what is not in one’s life. Many people worship the methods, mentioned above, to increase productivity at work and, in the meantime, end up procrastinating if they are behind schedule and taking too much stress.
This would be exceedingly counterproductive and would result in personal health issues for the person. Lastly, it is also of utmost importance that an individual maintains a balance between his professional career and personal life.