The old saying, “Don’t work harder, work smarter” is often the quoted when talking about how to increase productivity at work and home.
It means that there are a limited number of hours in the day so you need to fit the maximum amount of productivity that you can. Be more deliberate about the way you do things and optimize the little moments to add to your overall productivity.
Here, then, are four simple yet effective ways to make you more productive
1. Create Time Limits for Tasks
Minimize wasted time and optimize productivity by setting time limits the tasks you perform each day. Just like the way you are allotted only a half hour or 60 minutes for your lunch break, allocate specific time limits for such activities as going through your email, responding to phone calls, networking, writing reports, reviewing background materials, and so on.
The timer on your smartphone or time-keeping apps can keep you on track throughout your day. And once you are accustomed to working under constant deadlines, you will be amazed how much you can accomplish.
2. Do the Quick Tasks First
At the beginning of your work day, consider all the tasks you hope to accomplish before you go home. Then mentally arrange them by how long each task will take. Knock out the tasks that can be completed in two minutes or less first. This will provide more time for the more challenging and time-consuming tasks.
3. Don’t Attend Meetings
Most meetings you attend at work are an utter waste of time. Decline invitations to all but the most necessary meetings and encourage your co-workers spend less time meeting unproductively and more time actually getting things done.
For meetings that are absolutely essential, have an agenda, set a time limit for each item on it, and move through it as quickly as possible. Discourage people from straying from the most critical subject matters.
4. Work as You Commute
Most office workers spend a minimum of an hour or two each day just traveling to and from work. Make this time productive by using it to knock items off of your to-do list, especially if you ride in a carpool or take the train, bus or subway to work.
Use WiFi and high-speed Internet to work on your laptop while you are away fro your desk rather than wasting this time reading or looking out the window. Instead, make the most of it.