There are only so many hours in a day. But, you don’t always get to choose how you get to spend them. In fact, more often than not your schedule is at the hands of others — especially your colleagues.
How can you stop others from interfering with your schedule? Here are a few of the worst workplace culprits and how to stop them from wasting your time:
Tips for Higher Productivity
Most professionals, no matter their industry, want to maximize their efficiency in the working day. Search engine results for “how to increase productivity at work” yield tens of thousands of sought-after advice.
Yet, there are some common misconceptions about productivity. Nevertheless, most productivity advice has a recurring theme: stop having meetings for the sake of having meetings.
Time spent together in the same room (or on the same conference call) doesn’t equate to time getting work done. In fact, tech giants like Apple and Google hold themselves to 3 basic meeting rules:
- All meetings should have a stated purpose or agenda.
- Attendees should walk away with concrete next steps or Action Items.
- The meeting should have an end time.
Keep in mind that while meetings can hamper productivity, they’re not the only time wasting activity to blame. If you manage a team, hold them to their goals. Enacting SMART goals team-wide is an efficient way to impose deadlines while measuring the results of a project.
Likewise, even if you’re not a manager SMART goals can be created to hold yourself to deadlines.
Stop Wasting Your Own Time
Are you guilty of wasting your own time? Perhaps you recognize some of the habits in the SlideShare. In order to stop wasting your own time, start by thinking about how much your time is worth.
After all, time is something that you can never get back once it’s gone. Identify the behaviors that result in time loss. And, never forget to honor the habits that work. You will gain insight and real data into where your time goes once you observe how you devote your time to activities. Map these activities—daydreaming, coffee runs, errands—into break patterns to see how much on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis is spent on non-core activities.
You can prioritize from here. For example, maybe grabbing a quick 5-minute cup of coffee is something that helps you take a needed mental break. Don’t push this to the side if it ends up disrupting the rest the day.
Also, don’t disregard the rabbit hole that is multitasking. Neuroscience shows that multitasking is a wasted effort.
When humans attempt to multitask each task is less well done than if full attention had been given. Recognize that if you’re juggling multiple tasks at once to get ahead, you may end up pushing yourself behind.