Working smarter means knowing what you are doing for the day and accomplishing it!
Ground zero – the morning…
Maybe you have been through this before? You arrive at work, be it an office or your home-based office, a few minutes early before opening. As you approach your desk, your mind clicks on. “What should I do first?”
This is generally followed by spending the next 20 to 30 minutes wandering around the office, having a chat, grabbing a coffee, shuffling papers, checking Social Media etc.
Sound familiar? Don’t worry, you are not alone. In fact, this is one of the most common scenarios for thousands of people as they go to work day in and day out.
It’s a productivity-killer. You haven’t chosen it on purpose BUT you have neglected something – planning.
From Zero to Hero
Put simply productivity is accomplishing the most number of tasks assigned and efficiency is getting those tasks done in the shortest time possible. Working smarter by planning ahead is vital and crucial to ensuring that you are productive and efficient.
How to start
You could read tips and tricks on systems that work, or you could just focus on simplifying your day to day responsibilities at work. Prioritize! Be disciplined and swallow that frog!
Having done some of the things that have been blocking your progress will immediately make you feel less stressed and happy that you have accomplished something important for the day.
Take a few minutes to go through these ideas that will make you work smarter and simpler.
The end of each day should be a quick review – what did I get done today? What’s first on the list for tomorrow. Set yourself up for success!
If this doesn’t happen – Before you get to work, spend a few minutes doing the same thing, it’s NOT too late. Get a notepad and note it down. Make sure to put a time frame on it so you get reminded to move on to your next task. Time management is very important so make sure that you stick to the schedule as planned.
Make sure to focus your attention on your tasks – one at a time. This helps you maintain your train of thought when working. Something else on your mind? Write it down for later and get back to the task at hand. In case you get called out for an emergency meeting or pulled into other tasks, make sure to always finish what you started.
Don’t put too much on your plate!
Be realistic! Make sure to organize your priorities. Should there be a need to bump off some activities on your plan, discuss it with your supervisor or manager or client so they are aware of your progress and scheduling. Make sure to always set the right expectations.
Stop dwelling on failures, but make sure to learn from mistakes immediately
If you stumble and fall, go through the steps or pitfalls that lead you there. Put systems in place to avoid the same situation happening again. Be honest with other parties involved. Then – get back on your feet. Have a support structure to ask advice or help. Outsource if you need to or delegate.
Following these simple steps will help you work smarter and live more simply. Now, coffee?!
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Brilliant article and I am definitely a procaffeinator! Procrastinating while drinking coffee. Definitely some great tips!
I so need to stop ‘putting too much on my plate’ cause those ‘distractions’ just keep coming Thanks for the wake up call.
No problem Judy – all of us have times where we can’t see the forest for the trees, good luck!
Thanks for another great article Rachel, you are so right, we all have bad hair days occasionally but it shouldn’t stop us from going out – lol.
Absolutely Liz – every day is a clean slate!
“Be honest with other parties involved”. Hard, but true. This can be daunting when you share close quarters with a colleague, but it is vital to getting on with the job at hand. Great article!