The importance of productivity to the success of a business can’t be overstated. Data from the US National Library of Medicine tells us that reduced productivity from health-related issues alone leads to over $260 billion of losses to businesses, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
When it comes to a loss of productivity at work, usually the culprit boils down to the little things you’re doing- or not doing- every day when you go to work. In this article, I’ll show you 6 simple office hacks you can implement today that will produce a positive ROI in your output immediately.
Limit your phone use
According to CNBC, using your phone in the office is one of the main productivity killers, with 55% of the tested employees admitting to being part of that group. People have a habit of keeping them within reach, jumping to check the phone every time it ‘bleeps’. This means that you are constantly distracted by the mere idea of your phone needing your attention. It also means that they aren’t being productive at work.
To avoid being one of ‘those’ people put your phone on your desk and check it during your lunch break. Remember the saying ‘out of sight, out of mind’? Well, that’s how you need to limit your phone use.
Keep your desk and workspace optimized
Having distractions around hurts you. Keep your desk space neat and clean to limit the number of things that take up brain space. When you are done with a task, take a minute to stop and reorganize your things. Keep everything you need within arm’s reach, neatly organized so you don’t have to spend too much time finding it.
Tidying up will also limit the times you accidentally knock your cup of coffee over!
If you like plants, keep one on your desk. Research conducted by the Exeter University shows that employees are over 10% more productive when they have houseplants around them. This simple hack also brightens the livens up your entire workspace.
And since you’ll be sitting down the good part of your day working, check that your chair is ergonomic and comfortable for prolonged sitting. Lower back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide if that’s not enough to give you pause. Look for an office chair with proper lumbar support, adjustable armrests, and for those with neck issues, neck rest.
Manage your time
When you are at work, you can increase your productivity by managing your time. This means keeping an eye on the clock. Don’t use your phone, you’ll get distracted. You should keep a small clock on your desk, and use it to track your time and manage a few ‘self-imposed’ deadlines to increase your efficiency. Depending on the type of job you have, you could try the ’90 minute interval’ work routine, which according to Florida State University’s research works for elite athletes.
You may think that multitasking is a way of managing your time and working efficiently. It’s not. According to the American Psychological Association, it actually works against you, decreasing your efficiency at work! Keep a checklist and take note of your tasks and complete them one at a time, checking them off as you go. Maintaining a checklist will also help you to be proactive, reducing the problems you face by giving you a chance to solve them before they can materialize.
Keep track of your work
If you find time management hard, try keeping a log book and write down when you start a task and when you finish it. If you are taking too much time on a job, you’ll be able to see it and sometimes ‘seeing’ is believing!
Believe it or not, taking a break and allowing yourself to recharge at work will help. A study on Science Direct says that small, regular breaks will help you to focus. You need to learn to sit back at the end of every task, take a deep breath and allow your body to relax for about 5 minutes before you get back to work. This will give you a chance to relieve some of your stress and refocus your mind, increasing your overall work productivity.
The Business News Daily reported that employees who maintain a healthy diet are 25% more likely to have better job performance, and the RAND Corporation believes that sleep loss constitutes a $411 billion loss every year to the US economy. These statistics have a very significant point to make- Keep an eye on your health or you’ll hurt your ability to work productively. Get a good night’s sleep, every night. Exercise every day and make sure that you keep an eye on what goes in your mouth!
In the end, there are some many ways of increasing your productivity. Be a go-getter and implement plans and strategies that make it possible. You won’t increase your efficiency by sitting around and hoping for the best!