Staying energised, focused and productive at work can be a challenge. Here, cio.com offers five easy ways to help you keep feeling enthusiastic and productive throughout your workday.
1 Commit to work-life balance
There’s nothing wrong with answering a few emails, or handling a quick task or two outside of normal business hours, but beware; that habit can quickly take over, if you let it. To avoid burnout, you have to maintain strong boundaries between your work and your home life so you can approach both with a fresh, energetic perspective, says Tim Eisenhauer, president of intranet and collaboration software company Axero Solutions.
2 Make the Most of Meetings
Meetings are unavoidable, but you can and should make sure they’re effective and productive. “Meetings rarely result in actionable work. Workers spend on average six to seven hours per week in meetings and are then forced to do the real work they were hired to do on the margins of their day. This leads to burnout, which leads to retention and attrition issues,” says Carson Tate, founder of Working Simply.
To avoid this, keep meetings short and focused. Show up on time, stick to a pre-set agenda, and outline action items to address with other participants.
3 Set short and long-term goals
In addition to daily and weekly goals, setting long-term goals can help you achieve and maintain productivity, says Eisenhauer. “Setting and striving towards long-term goals helps you continue to grow, personally and professionally, and that can keep you motivated and energized. If you know you struggle to stay organized or get distracted easily by your colleagues, then you can work to improve those things over time. A few months down the road, you will see marked productivity gains.”
4. Pick up the phone
For all the myriad of ways collaboration technology has helped us communicate and be more efficient at work, there are times when the old-fashion telephone is better-suited to the task at hand. Sometimes waiting for an email to be returned can take all day or even longer. This delay clearly cuts into productivity at work, yet many people are averse to picking up the phone. “A phone call can save hours of waiting, and keep your workday on track,” Eisenhauer says.
5 Pay attention to creative ‘sparks’
Creative “sparks” – those innovative, sometimes off-the-wall ideas that pop into your head unbidden — should be preserved and treasured, as they can lead to ideas and solutions that could someday become benchmark products and services, says Eisenhauer.
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