Everyone has habits, but what is it that you do on a daily basis that slows down your productivity? Being aware of these things allows you to avoid these pitfalls and fuel yourself for increased productivity. Creating a not-to-do list may help you focus on tasks that are more important.
- Touching Emails More Than Once
When you open an email you have various options: read enough to know it is not something you need to read, read it and act right away, read it later and act later, or just read it later. You need to quickly decide on the action you will take, favoring the first two. Time.com refers to this as OHIO: Only Hold It Once. If you read the email and know what needs to be done, do it right away, otherwise you are doomed to reread it again, wasting 100% more time trying to recall and take action at that time.
- Meeting Just to Meet
How many meetings do you attend each week? Many companies have employees meet just to meet and have no schedule. If there’s nothing crucial to discuss, the conversation becomes an ineffective use of time that could have been put to use doing something else more productive.
Meetings without a goal or topic should be avoided, when you have a full plate of work, which, let’s face it, most professionals do. Meetings are meant to solve problems or address an action that needs to take place. It’s ok to tell your co-worker that you can meet with them later when there is an established agenda or game plan so that you can have a productive and focused meeting.
- Repeating Mistakes
You’re not perfect. We all make mistakes, even though some hide it better than others. Rather than trying to avoid errors all together, just attempt not to make the same mistake twice. During the adoption of my daughter one caseworker told me “better to ask for forgiveness instead of permission” when I wanted to pierce my foster (at the time) child’s ears. So I use this quote for you, it’s a risk-taking culture and with an understanding that we need to learn from our mistakes, go ahead and make mistakes, but don’t make them twice; learn and move on.
- Being a Chameleon
Are you willing to do anything for anyone? This people-pleaser attitude does nothing but delay productivity, because you’re so busy trying to be someone who helps everyone that your priorities get mixed up and you find yourself filling up your time with tasks from other people.
Let’s say you tell a co-worker their project looks great and it really doesn’t – you just want to be nice. What are you saying in regard to time when they have to go back to the client and the client hates it? Yes, this will happen sometimes on great projects as well, but it will save time if you’re honest and give constructive criticism.
- Being Connected 100% of the Time
According to Learnstuff.com, over 12.2 billion collective hours are being spent browsing on a social network everyday, costing the American economy around $650 billion a year in lost productivity. Remove your alarms and turn your phone off for a day and see how productive you can be.
Learn to live differently and this productivity could translate from your work environment and into your home life. It’s small changes and small steps forward that create productivity and expand our horizons. Make a small change for the better every day!
For more tips on this topic, check out:
4 Tips to Increase Office Productivity at an Inbound Marketing Agency