A late bloomer needs to stay productive throughout the week. This is a good habit that will ensure you stay on top of your game and achieve your work objectives. Workplace productivity means the assessment of the efficiency of an employee in an organization. Increased productivity in the workplace is mutually beneficial to you as an employee and also to the organization that you work for. Improving workplace productivity is linked to higher employee satisfaction, greater revenue generation, and improved customer service.
Most of us begin our week with zeal and commitment to completing tasks on time, while also saving on time and cash. However, by mid-week, the excitement weans off and it is easy to fall back to old habits such as procrastination, sleeping in, and poor time management which results in falling behind schedule on important tasks. While it is human to sometimes falter or stumble, it is admirable to aspire to a greater ideal.
If you want to remain productive throughout the week, here is a ten-step that contains productivity tips you should stick to:
1. Make a work plan
A wise person once said that failing to plan is the same as planning to fail. As a new week commences, a late bloomer should make a plan detailing how critical tasks will be accomplished. A good plan will help you prioritize more efficiently.
This way, you do not lose track of what is important while chasing the mundane. First, you need to list every task that you imagine is important. thereafter, you can assign importance to each task, marking them as either ‘urgent’, ‘normal’, or ‘low’ priority. If you find it difficult to assign priorities to your task, visualize what it is that you must accomplish.
2. Track your social media use
Social media is a useful tool and has become an inseparable aspect of our lives. However, too much of anything is dangerous. Heavy social media users are more sleep deprived than other social media users and this, in turn, makes them less productive at work. Heavy social media use is also correlated to reduced attention span, making it difficult to switch between tasks and be productive.
Rather than decide to quit social media for good, you can track your social media use throughout the day to gain insights into your habits and make a deliberate effort to keep it at a healthy minimum.
3. Optimize your work routine
Optimizing your routine for productivity is a game changer. You can automate some repetitive tasks, freeing more time for tasks that require deep work. Moreso, if you have the capacity, you can delegate some tasks to staff, and employ the most appropriate resources and tools to do a specific task.
Use a calendar to manage your tasks. Equally important, bundle similar tasks together so that you can complete them in a short time.
4. Manage your resources
Your most important resource is time. Manage your time efficiently, you only have 24 hours in a day. Equally important is your energy. Slot in your most important work at a time when you have enough energy to see it through, so that you do not leave tasks halfway done. Learn to say NO to unnecessary tasks and responsibilities that drain your energy.
5. Prioritize your health
Health comes first. It is difficult to be productive when you are in poor health. Make sure you make time for balanced meals. While energy drinks, coffee, and sometimes booze can give you a sudden burst of energy, in the long run, these substances have diminishing returns on your productivity. Keep them at a minimum. Stay hydrated. Take frequent breaks to clear your mind. Meditate. Watch a show. Take a day off to catch up on other aspects of your life. Set time aside for self-care.
6. Customize your work environment
The Covid-19 pandemic ushered in a work-from-home culture that can disrupt productivity. Many of us started working from home as a result of lockdowns, and while the pandemic may be behind us now, some of us did not return to the office. While working from home is the new normal, working on your sofa while watching TV can induce a relaxation mode at a time when you need to be productive.
If you have ample room, you can set up a home office. If you cannot afford the luxury of setting up a home office, find a co-working space where you can go work.
7. Focus on a single task at a time
There is a common myth about multitasking that implies that working on two tasks at a time gets the work done half as fast. Clifford Nass, a professor of psychology at Stanford University opines that multitasking wastes more time than it saves. It also kills creativity and concentration. When we think we are multitasking, the brain toggles between one task to another, draining cognitive resources and denting our productivity.
On the other hand, giving your attention to one task increases accuracy, creativity, and speed. Ultimately, you are more productive.
8. Focus on completion, not perfection
“Done is better than perfect”. Perfectionism is linked to procrastination. If you imagine that the only way to do a task is to do it perfectly, then you will never get it done. When you focus on perfection, you become paralyzed. All tasks become important and feel obligated to overdeliver, even when you don’t have to. Besides, you find yourself overthinking when you should be acting.
9. Make SMART goals
Making SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound) allows you to stay productive and make meaningful progress throughout your week. Goal setting also helps you work towards your vision and objectives, weeding out distractions in the process.
This, in turn, increases productivity. Studies by psychologists Edwin Locke and Gary Latham have found that setting goals increases productivity by up to 25%. A similar study led by Sven Amus also revealed that “even without financial incentives goal-setting improves worker performance by 12 to 15% compared to the situation where no goals were defined.”
10. Leverage on teamwork
Teamwork lessens the burden on individuals to complete tasks. Sometimes, an employee of an organization may be overwhelmed with work while another has free time on their hands. Working as a team balances out the burden of work, increasing productivity and preventing burnout.
Teamwork also increases idea sharing, leading to innovative ways to complete tasks. Two heads are better than one. Working as a team also boosts morale.
In conclusion, the importance of productivity in the workplace cannot be overstated. However, don’t beat yourself up if you find yourself slacking at times. The idea is not to be perfect, it is to make incremental improvements to boost your productivity and be more impactful in your business or career.