It’s The Small Things That Can Ruin Productivity
Checking social media again… another time-waster (image)
You know the importance of productivity in the workplace. You will appreciate the need to maximise your time efficiently to ensure you get everything done before you head home for the day. And you will probably know of the common hindrances that can ruin your productivity. But it’s the small things you do that can also play a part. These time-wasters may appear insignificant, but they still play a part in stopping you from getting work done.
Consider the list we came up with below. Are you guilty of any of them? If so, perhaps now is the time to sort yourself out, ensuring no more time is wasted during your working day.
Checking your emails – Fine, if you need to check your emails for important customer or client messages, then don’t sweat it. On the other hand, if you are returning to your inbox more than you need to – just to see if somebody has emailed you, socially or professionally, then you are wasting valuable time.
Browsing the internet – Not only are emails a problem, but you may be guilty of browsing the internet more than you should be. Now, if you are doing research, then fine. On the other hand, if you are constantly checking social media, looking on shopping sites for the newest deals, or browsing randomly because you are in the midst of procrastination, then stop it. You need to install an internet blocker to stop you from wasting any more time.
Going out for lunch – It’s lunchtime – yay! – but this can be another time waster. If you’re out of the office for lunch, you may very well end up window shopping, or find yourself bumping into somebody for a natter and a gossip. Before you know it, you have used more than your allotted time for lunch, and you return to work late. Stop this from happening by being proactive. Prepare yourself a packed lunch, which will both save you money and time. For drinks, have bottled water delivered to your office, rather than popping out on the time-wasting and unhealthy coffee-run. You see, while there is nothing wrong with eating and drinking during the day, it’s the minutes you waste around that time that is the problem.
Taking smoke breaks – For starters, smoking is a filthy and dangerous habit and one that you need to deal with as soon as possible. But as well as being a literal killer, smoking is another time killer that you need to curb. Instead of disappearing outside regularly (much to the annoyance of your hardworking, non-smoking colleagues), try something else. Vaping is a safer alternative to smoking, and can be done indoors, or you may go for a traditional solution, such as eating gum or playing with a stress ball instead. Better for you, and better for those around you!
Looking for something – How many minutes do you waste each day looking for something vital? It may be a pen, a paperclip, a stapler, or some other such piece of office equipment that is needed to get your task done. If you can’t find what you are looking for straight away, then you probably have a cluttered desk or untidy drawers. Then if you can’t find what you need, you will probably end up wandering over to a colleague to borrow their equipment, resulting in more time wasted, especially if you have a gossip while you’re with them. Therefore, organize your desk, having what you need on hand at the start of each day, and labeling your drawers, so you know where everything is kept. Only then will you be able to keep track of any ‘lost’ items.
There was a paperclip here somewhere… (image)
Complaining – Something many of us are guilty of – we can feel better when we vent our feelings – but it’s another time waster. We don’t know what you complain about, but we can list a few that are common in the workplace. This can include grumbling about the boss, moaning about the weather, complaining about co-workers who aren’t within earshot, and rambling about nuisance customers. We complain to anybody who will listen, but not only will this not do us much good in the long term anyway (people will tire of listening to us), we are also spending time nattering to others about our complaints when we should be working instead. Hint: people will then start complaining about your negative and wasteful behaviour!
We aren’t telling you to work yourself to the bone, spending all your time working with very little downtime. But you do need to be aware of the time-wasting activities that may seem insignificant, but which actually hinder your productivity during the day. Take a break, by all means, but be mindful of the small things we mentioned, as well as any other time-wasters you may be guilty of yourself. You will get more work done when you deal with them, and you will feel better about your day when you finally return home.