How To Be More Productive At Work
If you’re watching this video, you’re interested in becoming more productive at work. Michelle is awesome at this. So I assigned her this topic and I was excited to see what she came up with because what can you really share in just a you know a short 10-minute video? You it did a good job. So I’m excited for you guys to see this. While I’m grateful now to work for myself, I have done my time in the cubicle jungle and I also have employees that I am striving every single day to help them be free from distractions and be the most productive that they can. So today we’re going to talk about how to be more productive at work. Now one of the most important things, I think the foundation for this conversation today, is making sure that you are clear on your job description. If you’re finding yourself distracted because you’re wondering what the most important things to do are maybe you need to spend some time with your boss or another leader in your organization to make sure that your job description is clear. From that, it’s a lot easier to create a plan where you can be the most productive possible. Now after you know and you know that your job function is clear, the second most important thing is to find ways to eliminate distractions in your every single day. A study done by Basex research showed that every time you were interrupted, it takes 20 minutes to get back into the projects that you are working on. And if you calculate all the interruptions that you receive in a given day from email notifications to phone calls, people knocking on your door, or coming around your cubicle, that’s a lot of interruptions to your most important work. So if you need to eliminate distractions not only so that you can be more productive so that you’re costing the company less money and lack of works getting done, here a couple of things that you can do to make sure that you are creating a distraction free zone in your office Number one, it’s okay to set times where you are not interrupted by anything. Just make sure everyone knows about it. Let your boss know if you’re going in for a specific project, if you’re going into your space, or another space that you need to not be interrupted. Maybe even place a note on your door that you’re in the middle of the big project and when you’ll be coming up for air. The second thing that you should do is to eliminate all notifications on your email, social media, and on your phone. Now sometimes we think, but wait a minute I might miss something important. But I have yet to find a real emergency that will go above and beyond that can wait for an hour or two for you to finish a really important project. So let those notifications go so that your brain can be clear and not to interrupt it every five minutes with whatever might be coming. Now when I worked in the corporate world we had a great training that taught us to only check our email three times a day. That was really hard for me because I was really good at checking my email all the time! making sure that I was up and getting information to clients and responding to people really quickly. But when I found that I did email it three times a day I was much more effective in the other tasks and responsibilities that I had and I found out that responding in a couple of hours really worked under most circumstances. Now of course if there’s an emergency your boss can come get you or they can come into your office and say, “hey we need you right now”. But generally speaking, setting those expectations are good for you and for everyone around you and so that you can do your best most quality work. Now the third thing that you need to do is to turn off your phone and which can be hard. Not just the phone in your pocket, but the phone sitting at your desk. It’s okay to send calls to voicemail and to respond in their appropriate time. I love the principle of batching and I use this in my business and I use this for my employees as well. Doing certain things and getting as many things like items done in one time will help you be the most effective. Batching also works for phone calls and emails as well. So allow yourself the time that you need to be creative or to work on a hard project or to finish a spreadsheet that your boss needs by eliminating some of those distractions that will help you be super productive and you’re giving it your best brain forward.
Now I understand that you cannot go a long time. Maybe you don’t need four hours of dedicated work. Studies show that your best and most productive time is within a sixty to ninety minute window so give yourself 60 to 90 minute windows to be really productive and if you need a break, resist the urge to open social media because you can get caught there and it can be a sucker that will take you in and keep you for a lot longer than just getting distracted for a minute, a minute or two on a video. The best breaks you can give your brain after that 90-minute window involves movement and fresh air. So take some time to walk outside. Go walk around your building or even just go walking refill your water cup it allows your brain to focus on different things, different movements, different ideas, it really clears better and actually sitting in a screen and looking at something else especially. If your screen in your work is super job intensive and you’re focused on a computer for most of your day, allow your brain to get some get a real break with fresh air or by just walking around. Now I know that some of these things are a little bit elementary. You’ve probably heard them lots of times. But when was the last time you actually implemented something that would help you be more productive? So of all of the things that I just shared with you whether it was putting office hours or letting people know not to interrupt you or taking a break at a good important time or eliminating your notifications or turning off your phone which one of those could you implement the next week that will help you be a little bit more productive and a little bit more effective in accomplishing great work? Think about it and apply it and see what kinds of success that you find in your business and in your professional life as well. Your boss and your company will appreciate you for getting it done. Now I know that that’s just kind of scraping the surface level of being productive at work especially when there can be a number of distractions, but let’s apply this into an additional principle. As we talked about batching like items, one of the best things that I have found is creating daily, weekly, and monthly action lists. Many of us are ruled by to-do lists and I love a good to-do list. If I can cross something off, I feel like I have accomplished mounds in that day. I have to-do lists in many places and in many forms and over the years even from the time that I was twelve years old and had my very first Franklin day planner I have loved to-do lists. But one of the things that I have found as a professional is that it’s a lot easier for me to work off, of daily, weekly, monthly and then what I call one-time to-do lists. Many of the tasks that we do in a given day, week, month, or even a year are tasks that need to happen on a routine basis. And sort of set up continually putting those on a to-do list, create your daily list. Things that you need to do every single day. Create your weekly list and then assign them a specific day of the week to get them done. Some things that are inconsistent, maybe you need to do them Tuesdays and Thursdays. Or if they only need to be done once, maybe they’re done on Mondays or Wednesdays. But be that specific and put that together into your weekly list so that you are super productive. Now it also works with your monthly atoms as well. While they may not be as consistent things like billing if you are responsible for that, but only needs to happen once or report that is due monthly to your boss, set a specific date to get it done. Whether it’s the 30th or the 15th, make sure you create that routine. Because here’s the secret, our brain understand the calendar. It is ingrained in us from the time that we are really really little. We teach our children, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. They understand January, February, March, April, May. And so our brains really have been trained to think calendar basis but our brains aren’t necessarily trained as well to be productive with our to-do lists. So if you’ll start to take your most important routine tasks, assign them days weeks or months. Then your brain actually works on them before you even get there. It’s kind of like how you look forward to a reunion that happens in June or lunch with a friend that might be happening next week because it’s on your calendar. If you put, take your to-do list items that you do most frequently and assign them to a calendar day on your calendar, as you look forward your brain will continue to see it and will continue to go to work at it. And so when it actually comes up your brain is ready to attack that individual task because it has been prepared for it long before.
Instead of looking at a to-do list where you’re jumping around from one thing to the next, batching items and then scheduling them on your calendar will make you super productive and also more effective. So the last tip that I want to leave with you is we’ve talked about a number of different ways for you to be more productive, is at the end of the day, one of the things that I think is the greatest killer for productivity in corporations is blame and lack of responsibility. Now in this moment you may not notice it and maybe you are a total rock star in this area but I love the principle by Jack Canfield to take 100% responsibility for your life. It can be easy to blame your lack of productivity or your lack of work on your work circumstances or your boss or a crazy nosy co-worker who comes and talks to you every 15 minutes and we can displace our productivity by the things and circumstances and people around us. But I want to invite you to own your life and that as you consider different ways to be productive, some of these things might take a little bit of planning but I’ve also learned the plan is the four-letter word for success. For you to take your life in your business to the next level, putting some of these productivity practices into your life will help you not just accomplish things at work but look forward to future jobs and opportunities and maybe even solo businesses that you want to run because these principles are in place. So I’m excited for you and I hope that as you think through the things that we have talked about in this video you’ll find one or two where you can choose to take a little bit more responsibility and own so that you can have the success that you want not just in this current job but in the many jobs to come. And as your productivity increases, you’ll find that the culture in your company will increase as well. People will say, how are they doing it? why does that happening? how is it’s working for you? and people will come to you for advice because they’ll see you excelling. So I wish you all the best in getting things accomplished and I hope that you will make it happen. Thanks for watching hero TV today. Be sure to subscribe because Michelle is coming back for some more videos. This is a daily show. Live on purpose, make a difference, and be the hero.