There are times when we are productive, but then there are times where we read the same sentence three times and still can’t comprehend. Therefore, it’s crucial to get into the habit of working smarter. But where do you start? These are my top tips to improve efficiency in the workplace.
Although you may want to start everything on your to do list at once, it also puts you a lot further away from finishing everything. Prioritisation is key when it comes to your agenda and getting work in on time. One place to start is by looking at your deadlines and figuring out which tasks won’t take long and placing those in between the ones that will take longer. This makes it easier to see when your deadlines are, makes it easier to figure out what needs to be done first, and helps ensure you don’t miss when things are due by.
Make sure you have the technology to stay mobile
This one is huge. If you can only work from the desktop computer in your office, then it becomes hard to stay flexible and efficient. What happens when there are train cancellations or strikes? So if you don’t already have one, getting a laptop and your work VPN set up – which allows you to access your files from anywhere – will allow you to work from wherever you are.
We’ve arrived at a point with technology where even if you can’t get your VPN set up, there is an endless amount of cloud-based software that allows you to access your files through Wi-Fi. It is no longer the case where you have to carry a hard drive or USB around as you can now store files on Dropbox, Evernote, and even iMeet when you run your interviews on a web or video conference.
Schedule in tasks you often forget about
No one is perfect and often you’ll forget to do prioritise something. If you want to stay efficient and prevent yourself from forgetting to complete it, then pencilling in these tasks are a good way to make sure it gets done, particularly for those that you’re not the biggest fan of.
Be smart about your meetings
If you’re not careful, you’ll find yourself scheduled in meetings about meetings. If you face the challenge of getting everyone in a room, or if you’re constantly running overtime, it might be best if you do a conference call instead of an in-person meeting. Also, adding an agenda on your invite will keep everyone on track and everyone will have the opportunity to know what is being discussed beforehand. As mentioned above, there can be things that pop up unexpectedly that mean people can’t be where they need to be. Popping in a conference call means that you can be anywhere, rather than continuously rescheduling to get people all together.
So if you’re trying to improve your efficiency, a good place to start is prioritising your tasks, but don’t forget that life gets in the way and technology can help you work from wherever you are, making you efficient from anywhere.
Jason Downes, Managing Director, Powwownow.