Photo by Concord90, CC0 1.0

We all want our employees to be more productive, in fact it is essential to your company’s success. Some companies manage to get it right and have a highly productive workforce. Other companies seem to have a culture of low productivity. What is the difference and how do the successful companies achieve such great productivity levels?

Leadership and motivation is more of an art than a science. Much of it comes from intuition and experience. There are however many basic fundamentals that are important to be aware of. Let us take a look at 5 ways to enhance workplace productivity. These are tips the individuals need to grasp in order to become more productive. It will make them more valuable to the company and probably result in higher earnings. More often than not, productivity is contagious. If a few individuals get it right, most others will follow.

  1. Use A To-Do List

This basic concept is so powerful it always amazes me more people do not make use of it. If you do not have a plan of action for the day you will probably not be very productive, even if you work hard. It is as simple as that. You need to establish your schedule for the following day every evening before you go home. All tasks for the next day need to be ranked in order of priority.  Try to tackle the harder or less pleasant tasks first but stick to the order. If and when you do get interrupted, which does happen, go back to the list. It will keep you on track and it feels great to tick off the tasks as they are completed.

  1. Take Regular Short Breaks

No one can work effectively for hours on end. Studies and experience has proved that regular breaks refresh and energise you and result in increased productivity.

You need to distract yourself and clear your mind from work completely, even if it is just for a few minutes.

Don’t overlook basic workspace requirements. Something as seemingly simple as Office Chairs Only can be a huge factor in productivity.

Avoid large meals, especially junk food when you have a lunch break as this will make you drowsy later in the day. Rather go for high energy snacks and fresh fruit for extra stamina. It is also important to stay hydrated with water or fresh fruit juice.

  1. Multi-Tasking Is a Myth

Many people believe this is the modern way of doing things and makes you more productive but this seldom the case. Again, studies have been done to back this up. You are much more likely to be productive if you focus on one task at a time. Complete that and then move on to the next one. Trying to do multiple tasks at once might appear like a great idea but will generally result in fewer tasks being completed successfully.

  1. Eliminate Distractions

Constant distractions will ruin your rhythm and slow you down. There will always be interruptions and the odd emergency but take steps to minimize distractions as much as possible. If you have an office door, keep it closed when you are busy on a task, if you have a meeting, do not take calls, simple things like that.

Be well organised in your workplace. Have a neat and tidy desk so that you know where everything is. The same applies to your computer, particularly your mail inbox. Avoid unnecessary clutter. You will save a huge amount of time by not having to spend ages searching for the item, document or information you need.

  1. Set Firm Deadlines

Just as with goal setting, tasks need to have deadlines and you need to stick to them. Be realistic and don’t put yourself under too much pressure but by the same token, push yourself in order to maximise productivity.

By applying these basic, easy to implement ideas, you will soon be amazed at the increase in your productivity. Your colleagues and very soon your superiors will soon notice the improvement and you will be a more valuable asset to the team. Most importantly, you will feel good about your contribution at work.