Staying productive is a top concern in every industry, but not every method can boost productivity for every employee. Productivity tips give you the best results when they're targeted for a specific task or work style. From procrastinators to computer-stationed workers, here are four common profiles and the productivity tips that can help each perform to the maximum.
1. Write Your To-Do List
Before leaving work, write down a detailed to-do list for the next workday. Instead of setting large, intimidating goals, break them down into smaller, more digestible to-dos. If you don't like to write paper lists, one productivity tip is to use an app such as Evernote or Wunderlist.
2. Strive for Accountability
Find a peer or co-worker to hold you accountable for your goals, and do the same for your partner. Brainstorm together to come up with small rewards for staying on track, such as going out for lunch.
1. Hone Your Focus
Multitasking keeps you from placing 100 percent of your attention on the task at hand, so practice focusing on one task at a time. Put your cellphone away, and resist the urge to check social media or pursue other unrelated activities.
2. Try the Interval Method
One key productivity tip for multitaskers is to work in bursts of five to ten minutes. Between these focused periods, allow yourself one or two minutes to give into distractions before your next interval.
1. Organize Your Email
Set aside some time every day to process emails, identifying the ones that need immediate action and deleting those you no longer need. Try to keep emails organized into two groups: those you can process immediately and those that require you to set aside more time.
2. Turn Off Desktop Notifications
While responding in a timely manner is important, in most cases, even urgent emails can wait 20 minutes. The New York Times recommends turning off notifications for intervals of 20 minutes whenever you need to focus.
3. Ask for Help
There's no shame in asking for technical assistance when you need it. If you feel a computer task is taking too long or you're having trouble with a program, call for help instead of spending time trying to figure things out on your own.
1. One Project at a Time
A cluttered desk saps productivity. Put all papers and documents that aren't related to the project at hand in a drawer or separate area, keeping your desk clear and your mind focused.
2. Know When to Delegate
If you have too many papers cluttering your desk, your problem may be less about organization and more about time management. An important productivity tip is knowing when you have too much on your hands and delegating tasks when necessary.
A few simple practices can boost productivity in minutes. Whatever your profile or work style, follow the productivity tips that apply to you, and enjoy smoother workdays.
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