We’re all busy. We live and work in a world that is filled with constant demands that steal your time and attention. Which leaves us with little time to sit back and relax.
Leading into Christmas, every man and his dog seems to want a reno or extension done. The best part is… they’ve called you a month out from Christmas to have it done in a couple of weeks so they can host their family for lunch on Christmas day leaving you with no time to get anything done, let alone started.
Every minute counts! The good news is you can shave a heap of time wasting off your day by working more effectively. Use these five tips to save time over the busy Christmas period and gain another satisfied customer.
Group similar tasks back-to-back
It takes most people several minutes to get into a productive mental groove geared toward a specific type of task. [i] So, it makes sense to pair similar tasks back-to-back in order to minimise the lag of starting and picking up another task. Completing similar tasks together will increase your efficiency and in turn will give you a great sense of achievement once you’ve knocked off these tasks. Cue smoko break…
Use productive shortcuts
If there is a smarter way of doing something…do it! When we say shortcuts, we don’t mean the type of shortcuts that someone else is going to have to fix later. We’re talking about productive shortcuts – one’s that save time in the long run. The key here is to look for simpler ways to complete a task. For example if you use a computer for work, learn the keyboard shortcuts on programs that you use regularly. If you have a heap of tasks that need to be done by knock off time, delegate some of your tasks to someone else. Is there a quicker way to cut out traffic and get to site earlier so you can get your day started?
Distractions are everywhere. They pop up on the corner of your screen, through the ding of a phone or the guy that just won’t stop talking (there’s always one onsite…). Cutting out all distractions for a set time is one of the most effective ways to get things done in less time. You can’t remain in hiding forever, but you can be nearly four times as productive while you are.
Plan ahead and start early
Everyone wants to make the best use of their time. So why not plan ahead and prepare yourself so that when you get stuck into your tasks for the day, you will be able to use your energy productively. It can be as simple as 10 minutes of dedicated planning each evening going your tasks for the next day and what you’d like to accomplish. This will save you an extra 30 minutes of ad-hoc prep in the morning, meaning you get straight into your day.
Handle two minute tasks immediately
No one likes a time wasting task “The 2 Minute Rule” is a fantastic tip taken from David Allen’s book, “Getting Things Done.” It suggests that if you roughly estimate that a task is going to take you less than two minutes to accomplish, do it right now. It’s a waste of time and energy to keep small tasks like this on your to-do list and in the back of your mind.
Follow these five tips in your daily routine and you will enjoy the benefits of a time effective workplace.