With too many unnecessary meetings, emails and interruptions there’s so much time wasted at work that it’s hard to get everything done in the allotted hours. To survive in an environment like this, workers either work longer hours, produce work to a lesser quality due to being rushed or miss deadlines altogether.
It doesn’t have to be like this. In fact, I believe productivity improvements of 100 minutes a day are possible with training and coaching. But what can you do now to be more productive? The choice is quite straightforward, either accept the status quo or action these 3 simple steps:
- Reduce interruptions – according to research from the University of Southern California the average worker is interrupted once every 11 minutes. (That’s 43 interruptions over an 8 hour day!!!) What’s worse is it takes an average of 23 minutes 15 seconds to get back on task. Understand the source of the interruptions (technology, people etc) and consciously limit the level of interaction.
- Have a weekly plan – be intentional with the work you intend to action for the week. Too many workers don’t have a realistic plan and lose time bouncing haphazardly from task to task. Your plan needs to also allow time for the work you can’t plan for but tends to pop up each week. We call this “reactive work” and can often equate to around 20% of your time.
- Action the plan – the single biggest difference between the highly effective and everyone else is they execute better. They don’t just talk about it, they just get on with it and do the work.
If you’re able to build the above suggestions into your day to day and week to week habits, then you’ll definitely waste less time at work. It’s all about implementation.