There are a whole host of tools and applications available with the promise of helping you improve your performance and increase productivity. Sometimes however, just a few small changes to your work habits can have a incredibly positive effect on your overall productivity.
Here are our 8 simple tips for increasing your productivity at work and getting the most out of your day.
Clean up your workspace
One of the easiest ways to feel more productive is to simply tidy. Clean up your desktop, throw away old notes, lose the half empty pens, tidy out your drawers and archive any old paperwork. Taking 5 minutes at the end of each day to 'spruce' up your workspace will help maintain this and keep you feeling productive and positive each morning!
Plan your day
It may seem obvious but taking just a few minutes to plan the day ahead of you will keep you on track. Prioirtise your tasks and assign them to time slots throughout your day.
Although the ability to multitask is often considered a good method for increasing efficiency, the case may actually be the complete opposite. Research has found that attempting to complete several tasks at the same time could result in lost time and productivity. Try to commit to a single task and complete this before moving on to the next.
Brighten up your office
Research has found that adding a splash of colour with interior plants or flowers can increase productivity by up to 15%. "Biophilia" is a term used to describe the extent to which humans are hard-wired to need connection with nature and other forms of life. Biophilic Design uses this as principles to create the interior and exterior spaces that we live and work in with numerous benefits to our health and well-being.
Minimise distractions & interruptions
Turning off personal email notifications, social media alerts and candy crush reminders will really help you keep on track throughout the day. Even small personal interruptions like a colleague stopping for a quick chat can disrupt your workflow and have a significant impact on overall productivity. There's no need to outright ignore everyone that you work with - a simple solution is to put on some headphones and listen to your favourite tunes so that people know you're 'in the zone'.
Take regular, short breaks
Whether you pop over to your local coffee shop, take a quick walk around the block, read a magazine for 5 minutes or chat to a friend - taking short breaks that are not related directly to your work can make a significant difference to your performance.
Follow the "two-minute rule"
Entrepreneur Steve Olenski recommends following the "two-minute rule" - the idea is simple: if you have a task that can be completed in two minutes or less, do it immediately. This will help you maximise small windows of time during your day and actually takes less time that having to come back to it later.
Exercise and activity isn't just good for your phiyical health, it can have a positive impact on your work performance. A great way to feel more productive and positive is to start your day with some exercise or work it in to your breaks during the day. Physical activity has been proven to affect mental health and focus.