Having trouble feeling motivated? See our list of the top 10 productivity hacks to increase your output.
Do you ever feel as though you have a lot to do but not enough time to complete it? Read on to learn helpful tips to improve your time management if you’re curious about how to be more productive.
What does productivity mean?
Although it can be applied in various spheres of life, productivity is a word that is frequently used in professional contexts. A production line’s output or the quantity of sales calls made can both be used to determine productivity in a corporate setting. The number of questions answered or words written could be used to gauge productivity in a classroom setting.
Productivity is essentially output determined by the input. However, if the outcomes aren’t immediately apparent, it can be difficult to quantify productivity. Some tasks and professions demand a lot of self-motivation. For instance, when attempting a creative effort like writing a book or when seeking to gain a promotion in service provider sectors. Productivity cannot always be gauged in terms of production or immediate results for these kinds of tasks.
Many people explore time management approaches while thinking about how to be more productive. Although they are related, productivity and time management are two distinct concepts, and not everyone who is productive is also adept at time management.
A person can utilise a variety of techniques and tools to manage their time effectively. The accomplishment of results in a predetermined amount of time is what productivity is all about. In certain cases, productivity is more concerned with the end than it is with efficiently managing a list of chores.
How to increase your job productivity
Being productive is crucial in any area of life when results are expected or when people desire to accomplish goals, but it’s probably seen as being most crucial in the workplace.
The typical 9–5 workday has been replaced by more flexible working arrangements as the modern workplace has evolved and moved toward hybrid arrangements that include in-person, remote, and online work. While some of these changes have motivated some people to work more productively, for others, these new circumstances provide difficulties for both the employee and the employer, who must devise fresh strategies for monitoring productivity and inspiring their employees.
Recommended Readings: 46 of the best productivity tools for work and life
Ten ways to increase productivity
Consider using a few of these productivity suggestions in your everyday routine. Keep track of what works and what doesn’t for you so you can create a long-term strategy to increase your productivity.
FIND YOUR MOST PRODUCTIVE TIMES
The traditional 9 to 5 job is dwindling in popularity as remote and “Covid working practices” becomes more common. The idea of working in more productive ways has been encouraged by flexible and hybrid work arrangements. Every person is unique. While some workers perform their best work in the morning, others find their best work comes after lunch. A great strategy to enhance productivity is to figure out when you are most productive and then set up your daily schedule to take advantage of these peak hours.
ESTABLISH MODEST OBJECTIVES
We frequently overestimate the amount of time it will take to finish large jobs or projects because they can feel scary. By segmenting activities into manageable, incremental milestones that build until your project is finished, you may generate forward momentum. For instance, during the day, respond to four emails at a time to empty your inbox.
AVOID BEING DISTRACTED
It’s quite common to become distracted, and maintaining attention isn’t always easy. It is a skill that can be learned, though. Use a productivity app like Freedom, turn off your notifications, or put your phone in airplane mode.
To avoid interruptions and finish jobs, people frequently employ the Pomodoro technique. Users work in timed sprints of 20 to 30 minutes after setting a timer and clearing their workspace of all distractions (social media, emails, etc.). A great technique to improve your capacity to focus for longer stretches of time is to realise that you only need to pay attention for brief amounts of time.
Look over your daily chores if you work in a team and see if any can be assigned to other team members. We frequently take on tasks that are outside our purview or that others could complete far more quickly.
It’s not about delegating tasks you don’t want to do. Instead, it entails ensuring that everyone is engaged in tasks that are most appropriate for their abilities and availability. Business Fundamentals: Project Management, a course offered by the Open University, goes into more detail regarding leading and delegating within a team.
The majority of business owners attempt to balance all of their obligations. There may be more time available for projects with a higher priority if tasks like creating social media content are delegated to new hires or handled by freelancers.
SPEND 5 MINUTES
Try the five-minute rule if procrastination is a serious problem for you. You may get rid of a lot of the reasons why you won’t start a task by telling yourself that you will only work on it for five minutes. To write an email, conduct research, finish some filing, or create a task outline, most people just need five minutes.
The desire to continue often persists after the allotted five minutes have passed. Even if you switch to another worthwhile assignment, the quick tasks you finished in the allotted time still make a significant contribution to your final project. As usual, we put off these little jobs the most.
PRIORITISING BIGGER TASKS
Avoiding challenging or time-consuming tasks in favor of concentrating on immediate successes might be enticing. However, you can improve your drive and focus for the rest of the day by tackling your most challenging projects first. If you feel most productive early in the day or then, give these bigger jobs top priority.
DO NOT MULTITASK
It can be tempting to attempt multitasking and juggle several workplace tasks at once. Even while it may seem useful, this rarely yields the best outcomes. You will accomplish each activity more quickly and to a higher standard if you concentrate solely on one at a time, allowing you to move on without interruption to the next one.
USING TIME BLOCKS
Time blocking is a tried-and-true method for increasing productivity. You consciously choose to devote a “block” of time to a specific task by adding time block frames to your weekday calendar. For example, with the help of a construction time tracking app for employees, managers can easily allocate work and analyze employee productivity more efficiently. A major benefit of using this type of application is that it allows businesses to efficiently manage employee time blocks. Time blocks measure how much time individuals or groups of workers are dedicated to a given task, ensuring they stay on schedule with minimal interruptions. Not only do constructive time-tracking apps increase the efficiency level but they also encourage responsible behaviors within the workplace.
Typically, time blocks are broken into 60 or 90-minute segments. One of the advantages of time blocking is that once finished, it provides a visual timetable for your workday. You might want to print out the schedule or colour-code your chores to help you remember what to do and when.
Employees frequently take on tasks that are outside the purview of their roles, as we covered in the section on delegation. While being adaptable and seizing opportunities for professional growth are positive traits, it’s also critical to establish time limits.
You must be able to do your tasks efficiently and productively within a fair amount of time. By establishing boundaries, you can avoid feeling overloaded. Check out Professional Resilience: Building Skills to Thrive at Work at Deakin University if you’re interested in learning more about limits and resilience at work.
GO ON A BREAK
While suggesting breaks when discussing productivity at work may sound odd, regular breaks do assist reduce stress and boost productivity. In the course Mindfulness for Wellbeing and Peak Performance at Monash University, students learn how to enhance performance by lowering stress levels at work.
There are many workplaces that mandate regular breaks for workers. But if you work from home or in an unmonitored office, you might want to schedule brief breaks every few minutes for 10–15 minutes. Take a break from your work during this time so that your mind can relax and come back to it with renewed vigour and perhaps some fresh ideas.
Some of the most important factors for boosting productivity in the job and in daily life have been covered. Anyone may learn how to be more productive by concentrating on implementing one or two of these recommendations at a time, which will reduce stress and help us achieve both our professional and personal objectives.