Tips for Greater Productivity

  1. Don’t check e-mail until after lunch. Your best hours for focus and critical thinking are in the morning, so use mornings to accomplish the most difficult and important tasks.  E-mail can wait until the hours when your brain operates more slowly; the afternoon.
  2. Prioritize.  Do the most important tasks first.  Let everything else fit into whatever gaps are left.
  3. Skip meetings.  If you don’t absolutely have to be there, don’t go.
  4. Drink water.  Proper hydration will make you feel better all day long.
  5. Exercise.  Even very brief periods of exercise throughout the day can lower stress and improve your mood as well as your ability to focus.
  6. Eat well. Keep your staff lounge stocked with fruit, veggies, and good-for-you beverages.  Get rid of the candy dish.  And don’t sit at your desk over lunch; you’ll eat more and it will be less healthy.  The healthier your body is, the better your mind can function.
  7. Take frequent breaks.  Your mind can only focus on a task well for about 30 minutes before it loses efficiency.  Taking a break allows your brain to rest and work at 100% once again.
  8. Schedule gaps in your day.  As much as possible, don’t schedule one meeting right after another.  Keep gaps in your day to allow for running late or activities taking longer than expected.  If your gaps don’t need to be used, that’s simply extra time that you can fill in whatever way you want at the moment.
  9. Personalize your office.  Having the opportunity to decorate your own space makes staff more comfortable, and that comfort adds to productivity.  Hang pictures, bring in furniture if there’s space, and even paint the walls if you are planning to stay for a long time.
  10. Find a quiet space.  You don’t want to be completely isolated, but you also shouldn’t be in a space with too many distractions.  Find a place in the balance.
  11. Bring the outdoors in.  Studies show that simply adding plants to your workspace can increase productivity up to 15%.

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