Activity Doesn’t Equal Productivity
Have you ever walked by an employee who was busily shuffling papers and moving items on their desk? They manage to look as though they have a million things going on, yet are the most unprepared at meetings and often miss deadlines. As a manager, you do not have the luxury of just “looking busy” – you ARE busy. As a great manager, you must know how to manage your time so you meet deadlines and accomplish tasks. How do you do it?
As a manager, it’s all about speed and efficiency. The faster you can successfully complete your day to day tasks, the faster you can get to the projects that truly require your time and attention. Undivided attention is a premium in the world of management, but is required for successful projects. In the world of business, multitasking is not productive. So, here are 3 ways to be more productive at work, so you can focus on what really matters:
Turn Off Your Notifications
Hey you… Yeah you. Stop staring at your phone. As a leader there is nothing worse than always looking at your phone. If you’re connecting with your phone, you are not connecting with your team. Your projects will also suffer from the lack of attention. A simple glance to check the latest notification will take you off track when working on a project, and you will have to waste valuable time getting back on track.
There is no one thing that sucks up more of your time out of your work day than email. There is no need to check your email so often. Once mid-morning and once at the end of the day is more than enough. If something is truly that important, it deserves a phone call. In most cases a 2-minute phone call can save countless minutes of back and forth emails.
Create Check Lists
Create daily and/or weekly check lists, not to-do lists. This will save you and your team time and help to avoid errors. It will also free your mind from the pressure of remembering mundane tasks so you can focus your attention on the important business you have to complete. Simply check the boxes as you go, and you will know it was completed right the first time. It will happen you don’t complete everything on your list. Move it to the top of the next day’s list and commit to completing it. More often than not, an incomplete check list is due to poor planning or unrealistic prioritizing. Find a system that works for you and stick to it. It will save time and stress.
It’s all about maximizing your time. Can you use your commute to check the news, read the latest article, or even check your email so you don’t have to take time away from your work day? Take a closer look at your day and you’ll realize there are plenty of ways to re-gain time. For example, do your daily meetings really need to be an hour long, or can you cut it down to 30 minutes by staying on point. So, turn off your notifications, avoid your email, create check lists, stop reading this, and get back to work. Break time is over!