Increase Your Efficiency at Work
You know those days where it feels you’re like running, but you never get anywhere? You’re working longer hours just to get projects done. We all get that way sometimes… it’s a factor of life. Instead of sulking in worry and stress, try reversing the way you work. Adding or changing something in your workday might make the difference between a 10-hour day and an 8-hour day.
Spice up your work schedule by trying a new method. Efficiency is a game of trial and error.
Everybody’s Living in a Digital World
Try to switch documents, proposals, and projects to a digital format. Too much paper will often add unnecessary clutter to a desk. Some do well with organized desk piles, while others allow paper to accumulate without purpose. Oftentimes, stress to get things done causes us to panic and put things wherever they land. That’s not always the best way and putting that proposal down in a designated spot will help you later!
Utilizing less paper is also better for the environment, so that’s another huge reason to join the digital side. We do encourage you to back up digital copies for safety purposes. An extra hard-drive or an online cloud will keep you from redoing hard work if something goes awry!
Have a Planner
A planner could be virtual, physical, or both. Some like to keep their work duties in a physical planner, while they keep their social events in a digital planner. Like we said in the beginning, efficiency is a game of trial and error.
Create a system to prioritize your tasks. Here is one form of organization:
- Events – These are things that happen at specific times such as meetings. Separate these events from tasks in some way. Maybe designate a different color or calendar for events.
- Action Items/Tasks – These are things that need to get done. Stephen R. Covey in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, outlines an efficient way to organize tasks. You can outline them with different colors, stars, or priority levels… whatever works for your mind.
Block Out Your Tasks
Time blocking is sectioning portions of your day/week to different tasks. It is easier to focus on one task diligently as opposed to switching back and forth. By investing yourself fully in one task, you decrease time spent restarting your brain for each new task and create a more efficient workflow. Many can create “theme days” focused on completing 1 or 2 tasks. The Todoist outlines how time blocking works in their article, Time Blocking.
Not only does this method expedite productivity, it allows more time for the worker to dedicate time for themselves, according to Entrepreneur. With time blocking, you can set time for you and your mental health, which is necessary to any worker.
Prepping for the Next Day
When the day is full of calls, tasks, and projects, we become too overwhelmed to worry about organization. Papers get thrown sloppily into piles and desk drawers to focus on the task at hand. Josh Spiro from Inc. recommends dedicating 15 minutes to sort through the chaos of the day. This allows you to go over what happened today and how to best prepare for tomorrow. You’ll thank yourself the next morning!
Do the Boring Stuff First
We all put off the boring stuff for later. This classic form of procrastination is inhibiting you. Fatigue settles in like clockwork later in the day, so that boring task just gets pushed off. Doing that boring task first will allow you to not have to worry about it for the rest of the day. Furthermore, you can feel accomplished because you got the boring stuff done!
Takin’ Care of Business
Efficiency is not a yes or no trait…. it’s more of a scale. There is always something you could be doing better. It’s something that you could be learning to make better use of your precious time. Efficiency is always a balancing act, and the first step to better efficiency is acknowledging that it can always be improved. Hey, the fact that you read through this post proves that you are on your way to improving your efficiency. So, settle down and try a new work method. You’ll see what works best for you.
Wishing you efficient days ahead!