Hey there lovely readers, how’s your year been thus far? Stupendous? Tremendous? Crazy? Lazy? My first half had us spinning wildly out of control before finally settling into a state of gentle chaos – triggering a determined focus on streamlining productivity and restoring work/life balance (roll on holidays!). And I bet I’m not alone.
Thing is, after years spent dedicated to finding ways to do more and be more productive, it’s no secret that we’re all now trying to do the opposite and regain precious time for ourselves.
One area I want to simplify is work. You too? Well you’ve come to the right place baby ‘cos I’ve been sleuthing and here’s my top 10 for snatching back precious moments. Hats off to you if you’re already implementing!
Jane’s top 10 time reducing productivity hacks:
1) Create email templates. If sending similar pitches or responses, creating a basic template for each will save you endless writing and editing. My team love mine so much, they’ve adopted them too.
2) Include talking points when sending meeting invites. Ask others joining the meeting to do the same and your agenda will be all set before entering the conference room.
3) Offer options. When asking someone for a meeting and before asking when they’re available, offer options for times that you are—then let them pick. Chances are one will work.
4) Keep a physical ‘to do’ list on your desk. Great for jotting down interrupting thoughts that can derail your focus. Check in at the end of end each day and prioritise for the next morn.
5) Stay off social media. No matter how tempting, way too easy to wander down that rabbit hole and fritter away hours while the work piles up.
6) Grab a daily snap shot of worldly activity. Use that social media catch up time to pop on over to LinkedIn instead for a quick learning session. While there, share an item or two aligned with your expertise. Double whammy – snap learning while promoting your personal brand!
7) Pop the personal mobile on Airplane Mode. Check in only during breaks (unless crucial to your job). Super for avoiding personal distractions.
8) Colour block your calendar. One colour signalling ‘I’m off the air for this period’ for deadline driven projects, another for critical ‘must do’s’ and items directly related fulfilling your role requirements, another for administration and so on. Stick to the same colours for viewing consistency! Works a treat, so much so, our entire company adopted this approach for quick productivity/billable hour reference.
9) Offer solutions. To cut down on back-and-forth emails, don’t send one without offering a solution to the question you’re proposing. Make it easier on everyone for your people will appreciate it.
10) Download Grammarly. If you’re not the best with punctuation or words—or even if you are and want to take editing out of the equation—this app is genius. You’re welcome!
This one’s a bonus – Say no! If you don’t have time to help with a project this week, don’t offer.
Any fantabulous hints to add to the list? Feel free to drop them into the comments box! Meanwhile, stay tuned for more!