Hours in which instead of focusing on our upcoming projects, we let ourselves get distracted by colleagues, incoming calls, emails and countless other thoughts? In many of our cases too much precious time is wasted and spent working extremely inefficiently. This can occur due to different reasons: some people are easily distracted; others tackle too much work at once. They have in common that they quickly become stressed or overwhelmed by the way they work and tend to acquire and unhealthy working rhythm - and exactly in order to avoid this, is that more efficient work techniques are required. For working more efficiently not only means better results leading to satisfied bosses and employees, it also has a positive effect on our psyche: feeling that something has been actually accomplished throughout the day also helps relief the pressure after working hours in order properly enjoy our leisure time.
More structure - less time loss
Shaping your workplace:
The design of the workplace plays a more important role, than many might think, for eventually we end up spending around eight hours a day here. In particular, the basic ergonomic requirements such as a table at the right height, a well-adjusted office chair, a suitable mouse or a screen at the right height – the mind can only concentrate itself on work, when the body is comfortable. However, this can also mislead the body and cause distractions quickly - therefore for most people it is ideal to keep a healthy minimalism around the office desk. Nobody needs five shelves, three notebooks and a whole box full with office supplies lying around their cubicle. The less there is around, the less the distraction – even the cellphone should stay out of reach, since it is not needed at work and the temptation to take a look at each vibration is too high. Anyone who has a stable job, can of course also bring a personal touch to the atmosphere. Photos, postcards or flowers are in order, but you should not exaggerate - out of consideration for the colleagues and to avoid spreading a "living room atmosphere". This would also clearly interfere with an efficient work culture.
Defining a procedure:
part of working efficiently is to set the adequate priorities and to take care of them in a meaningful order. An important focus is the work done early in the morning, since here is where the blueprint for the work to be done during the whole day is established. Therefore, during the morning one should concentrate himself on the many small tasks that can be done quickly in succession, in order to have the feeling of having accomplished a lot by midday – or one should focus his early hours on the most unpleasant or strenuous tasks that lie ahead. In this manner, a positive work attitude can be created from scratch and the successful results will start emerging. Multitasking is actually a natural enemy from efficiency – who tries making many thing as one, usually fails, for none of the goals can be successfully completed. The correct order is also just as important: breaks have to be taken. Namely those in which the workplace is left in order to clear the mind.
Take advantage of tools:
In our times, various digital assistants exist, which can help us work more efficiently. Here each individual has to judge, which tools are useful for him and the improvement of his workflow. There is a huge variety and therefore the right solutions can be found for all the respective needs. For example, for those that easily get distracted by their smartphones and check their screens upon every vibration – no matter whether the call might be work related or not – various Apps present a solution. Such is the case of Offtime, which lets the user choose which calls, messages and emails should reach us in a predetermined period of time. In this way, the cellphone stays unnoticed for a couple of hours and the concentration can be focused on the actual, relevant tasks. Moreover, applications such as Freedom and Self Control help avoiding distractions related to the computer at work – they can be used to block individual pages such as social networks or e-mail programs.
Those who want to increase the efficiency within a team – which is often necessary when the employees are distributed along different locations – can also find tools like Trello or Slack very useful. Furthermore, for personal as well as team organization, Evernote or Wunderlist can prove to come in especially handy.
For those looking to improve the efficiency of corporate communications or to present in front of a large audience, Beamium is the right choice: both programs facilitate the easy transmission of presentations onto the diverse devices of the listeners. While Beamium is designed for PDFs and is characterized by and efficient minimalism, Slideflight is an innovative PowerPoint add-in. It enables a real-time transmission of presentations onto smartphones, tablets and laptops, as well as the subsequent download of the slides. Both concepts have the goal of leaving long lasting impressions on the audiences, so that the content of presentations stays fresh in the publics memories. They also save the time consuming procedures of sending presentations via e-mail or using handouts, which not only saves time but also reduces costs.
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