7 Tips for Improving Productivity

Productivity is an interesting word.  It describes, in broad terms, the pace at which you generate output. As an worker, business owner, even a student, productivity is important.

Having an system that allows you to create your output more effectively more means that you can free up time.  Time you can spend on play, hobbies or even just more output.

Here are 7 productivity tips to help you achieve more:

  1. Focus on what is important.  Activity isn’t progress unless it is activity towards your vision.  It is your goals that allow you to identify and select your priorities.  Select tasks that move you towards those goals.
  2. Stop Multi-tasking.  Select your top priority task and work on it until it is complete or until you reach a point where you cannot continue because of external dependencies.  Then work on the next priority.  A person with 10 priorities has no priorities so avoid having a task list that is too long.
  3. Avoid Distractions.  Learn to focus on just one thing at a time.  Distractions divide your effort and it often takes some time to re-engage with your original task.  For example, Avoid checking email as soon as it hits you inbox. Just finish the task at hand and check email at a scheduled time
  4. Break Projects Into Several Tasks.  Projects are often very large and take a long time to complete.  By splitting large projects into a series of tasks, you remove the perception that the task is unmanageable.  You also see individual tasks for their value to the overall project, those which matter and those which can be discarded.  You can then also then apply tip 1 and focus on what really matters.
  5. Batch Similar Tasks Together.  Routine is a significant waste of effort, particularly if you have to repeat something which requires time and effort to prepare.  Prepare once and then repeat the process for all tasks of a similar type.
  6. Do Something Positive.  Sometimes, it is difficult to get started on a big task of you find yourself blocked by a limitation of self belief or motivation.  Just take some positive action.  Anything that moves you forward is good and the very act of doing something can often free up the motivation and creativity you need to progress.
  7. Sharpen the Saw.  Dr Stephen Covey’s ‘7 Habits of Highly Effective People’  has ‘Sharpen the Saw’ as habit 7.  It is the habit of self renewal.  Take time for yourself to recharge your batteries, reenergize your motivation for your vision and then get back to the tasks at hand.

By committing to applying these few tips in your daily activity, you will develop behaviours that lead to increased productivity.  As with most things in life, it is the simple things that are often the most profound and most effective.

Dare to Aspire

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Filed under Business, Improvement, Performance, Time Management

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