3 Ways to Dramatically Increase Your Work Productivity



Work is about getting things done.   Therefore, we should take every opportunity to be more productive.  Over the years, I have searched for ways to be more efficient in the execution of my duties.  The list below is reflective of some of the approaches and advice I have received over the years.   


1. Plan Your Day


Nothing can make you more productive than taking a moment to review and understand what you would like to accomplish for the day.  Whatever tools you decide to use for planning (Day Planner, Franklin Covey, and Microsoft Outlook), I would suggest you take a look at using these tactics to improve your productivity. 


o   Become the master of your schedule - Even if you are lucky enough to have an assistant you must be in charge of your schedule.  Be willing to say no to meetings, notices, and other things that eat your time and are not productive. 

o   Have a meeting with yourself - If you use Microsoft Outlook or some other meeting planning system, block out time for a meeting with yourself. Then use that uninterrupted time to get things done.  An up and coming manager that I know used the "self -meeting" concept to great effect to grow his career, becoming more effective that his co-workers.

o   Take control of your email - Did you know the average person spends 13 hours a week just reading and processing email?  Here are some tips that can help you take control: 

    • Canned Responses:Much of our time using email is wasted crafting pitch-perfect responses to emails that could otherwise be dismissed with a cheerful "thanks, but I'm going to have to pass on this!"   I have crafted a host of canned responses to the most common questions and requests.  Gmail has a canned response feature allowing you to save standard responses that can be inserted into emails at the click of a button.
    • Archive Instead of Deleting: As a general rule, we tend to be hoarders of digital information. Desperately holding on to every last message, photo and file in case we might need it in the future. This makes sense with important emails, but remember that most email systems have an archive function.  Using it doesn't make your emails difficult to access - they're still searchable, retrievable and, most important, no longer clogging up your inbox. 
    • Ruthlessly Unsubscribe:Our email in box is open for business and available for emails from people that you want and from people that you don't want.  So unless you want to wake up to news of the latestsales at the outdoor supply store, or a fundraising email from your college, You should make it a regular part of your routine to unsubscribe from those non-essential emails.  I hope you consider emails from the Marben Bland Group as essential and will not unsubscribe from our posts. 


2. Set Ambitious, Yet Realistic Goals


The simple, yet powerful act of setting ambitious, yet realistic goals can greatly boost our productivity.  Some of the benefits of setting goals include:  


  • o   Increase Creativity - Setting goals can help to release your creative energies so you can focus on how to achieve them. You'll start to look for ways to make it happen.


  • o   Optimum Use of Resources - There are never enough resources to do everything; so setting goals can help you to prioritize. Goals can help in placing resources behind what you really want to do, rather than on things you are doing by default or by deflection.


  • o   Achieve Your Objectives - Setting goals enables you to clarify with other people what you are trying to do, and therefore, what they need to do to contribute or support.



3. Seek Help / Delegate Tasks Accordingly

Everybody needs help and should never take on large tasks alone.  Two of the biggest barriers for getting help is trust and introversion.  Keys to building trust and introversion in your colleagues: 

  • o    Clearly communicate requirements and expectations deadlines - Your colleagues would like to help; but, they are busy.  However, if you clearly review your requirements, expectations and deadlines they will take you seriously. 
  • o    Provide all the resources needed - Never leave it up to your colleagues to obtain the resources they need to complete their delegation.  Remember, it is your project that they are doing for you; the least you can do is to provide the support and resources needed.
  • o    Checkup, Encourage, Checkup - Checking up on progress is the productivity trick that professional project leaders use to ensure that work gets done.  When checking up if progress has not been achieved, never criticize; rather encourage and work on solving the problem.  (Learn how encourage instead of criticize by reading my post never criticize) 

Final Thoughts

The promise of this blog is to provide three ways to dramatically increase your work productivity.  I am convinced if you work on the three outlined approaches above, it will improve your work and life.  There is so much more that you can do.  I leave you with a brief list of other things that you can do to increase your work productivity.  I present these without commentary with hope that you will continue your productivity improvement. 

Productivity List 

Establish a routine that your colleagues can follow and count on Use voice mail effectively │ Return calls promptly │Use lunch time effectively A. Attend lunch & learns B. Join a lunch time civic group C. Regularly take a co-worker or your boos to lunch D. Use lunch to rest and recover │ Do the hard stuff first │ Take a mid-morning break │ Have regular updates with your boss │ Over communicate with your boss and colleagues │ Write meeting summaries│ Get to work early │ Exercise │ Make work more fun │ Bring in food treats │ Show your school pride at work





ęCopyright 2014 Marben Bland 

Marben Bland is a professional speaker, writer and business strategist. Specializing in assisting business with the acquisition of human and financial capital along with the strategies required to succeed in the marketplace.

For more posts go to www.marbenbland.com 

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