No matter how much you may like your job, it is hard to keep up with the 9-5 daily grind. It’s even harder to keep this up for all 252 working days in a year.
Don’t get me wrong – I sympathise with shift workers and those who work even longer hours - but for the average office worker like you and me, it can be difficult to hit the floor bright eyed & bushy tailed every day.
So how can you change things up a little? How can you create an environment that is more productive and more enjoyable?
Productivity needn’t mean working longer our pushing yourself harder – you just need to work smarter.
Check out our top productivity hacks below:
Exercise: Converse, don’t email
Pick up the phone or walk down the hall and talk directly to colleagues, or call them – and while you’re at it stand up for the duration of the call. For geographically remote folks, use chat. Unlike emailing, these conversational approaches to communication allow you to give precise direction and clear up misunderstandings more quickly.
Little bursts of exercise throughout the day can boost your productivity. Not only are you keeping your body active but in turn this will also help your brain to function optimally.
Give your day of meetings a bit of a shake up (or stand up!)
Guilty of answering emails underneath the table during meetings? Try standing meetings.
Once you’ve hauled everyone reluctantly onto their feet you’ll notice some immediate improvements. You can be more expressive, people get less distracted and, according to Forbes who gave the standing meeting a go, they tend to be quicker. They cut their meeting times by 25%.
If you’re fed up of being stuck inside then you could also try the walking meeting - favored by tech execs including Mark Zuckerberg.
Particularly when you are overworked or are operating under time constraints, checklists keep you on track and give you satisfaction when you cross things off. There are various applications you can try, such as Trello, which allow you to make collaborative boards of activities and checklists.
If you’re not a fan of tech and prefer to stick to diaries and organisers or a team whiteboard then that’s all good too. There is no wrong or right way of creating a checklist – it’s down to personal preference and how you feel you work best.
Think about your environment. We all know that our productivity levels drop when we feel uncomfortable. Whether it’s the temperature, the atmosphere, or the noise levels, we need to be relaxed and comfortable in order to be at our best. Make sure your office is somewhere you would want to work and a nice place to be! If your office is cluttered, cramped or noisy this could be affecting your productivity.
With the average person spending over 90,000 hours at work in their lifetime, many companies are looking to rethink their offices as a fusion of home and office space. Mobile technology, stand-up desks, meeting pods and relaxation areas are all playing their part in this shift.
If you’re thinking of shaking up your office space or perhaps contemplating a complete redesign, we can help! Fill in our contact form and our Projects team will call you back to discuss your requirements.
Get organised with gadgets
Paper everywhere? Juggling your iPad between your lap and desk? Why not make a few simple changes to your desk space and to organise your clutter.
We are also big fans of monitor arms as they can help to increase productivity significantly, especially when you have more than one screen.
Scientific research has shown that computer workers achieve 10-15% improved productivity levels and make 33% fewer mistakes when using two or three computer screens.
Our Flo dual monitor arms can also be fitted to hold laptops and tablets – brilliant!
Multitasking - It's a real productivity killer!
Research conducted at Stanford University confirms that multitasking is less productive than doing one thing at a time. Only two percent of us multitask effectively. So the remaining 98% of us are running around like headless chickens in the name of “productivity".
To get a clearer head before you start a task, disable any apps on your phone that might request your attention – like Facebook or WhatsApp (bye bye distractions!) – and set clear goals to get stuff done.
Also, don’t say yes to every request. This is the beginning of the end in your quest for productivity, especially if your project has a deadline. Adding extra work or trying to do favours will slow down your progress. Only take on what you can realistically do; we are not super-human robots! Don’t drown yourself in work - and ultimately, stress - for the sake of being afraid to say no.
Consider flexible working
Offices were created in the same mould as mass production factories, and they operated in a similar way for many years. The arrival of new technologies has ushered in big changes, yet it is remarkable just how many of the old ideas persist.
Review the way your business uses technology, and try granting your staff a flexible working policy.
Flexible working can encourage productivity in numerous ways. Staff might be able to avoid rush hour and arrive at work feeling more refreshed for the day ahead. They’ll be changing the environments that they work in more frequently, which can encourage creativity and productivity.
Any of these tips should help you become more productive at work, but I’m sure this isn’t an exhaustive list.
Got any of your own productivity tips to share? Tweet them to us.