Sunday 14 October 2012

Improve Your Productivity At Work

Work Scenario: Timmy's typical morning at work.

8.15 a.m. Timmy enters the office.
8.25 a.m. Timmy switches on his computer (and is staring at it till it uploads).
8.30 a.m. Timmy makes himself a cup of coffee. He meets his colleague, Jane. He asks her about how her daughter's piano exam went the day before.
8.40 a.m.  (The exam was difficult) Jane narrates her daughter's exam to Timmy.
8.45 a.m. Katherine and Jim arrive. Timmy has to ask Katherine about her birthday, which was also the day before. Everyone listens as Katherine starts narrating her birthday, which was lovely...
8.55 a.m. The story goes on...Timmy serves himself a second cup of coffee.
9.05 a.m. The door bangs. The boss is in. Everyone goes to his seat and starts the day.
9.40 a.m. Timmy is smoking less now, but realized that he didn't take one this morning.
9.45 a.m. Time for a cigarette break. He realizes that his cup is empty so he pours himself another one.
9.55 a.m. Timmy goes back to his seat and does some work.
11.00 a.m. Timmy forgot to check whether his new iPod has arrived. So he takes a short break from what he's doing and checks the tracking order.
11.10 a.m. Timmy remembered that it was his best friend's birthday. How could he have forgotten??? He logs onto facebook and wishes his beloved friend a warm happy birthday. Timmy thinks to take a quick look around facebook for a second...and starts roaming about.
11.40 a.m. Telephone rings. Timmy is startled to see that it's 11.40 a.m. already! He needs to hand in a report by 12.15 p.m., before lunch break. Panic breaks lose. Timmy starts sweating....what  a stressful life, he grumbles.

This is a very common work place scenario, where, although the work is done, a lot of time is 'wasted' which can leave you burdened with stacks of files and things-to-do that never seems to end.

Muovo has found the article below from Career Builder, which mentions three important lists that you should set up yourself to ensure that you get your work done efficiently.

1. The not-to-do list
In an eight-hour workday, how long do you spend engaging in water-cooler gossip or surfing the Web to see what Kanye West and Kim Kardashian are doing? Odds are it is longer than needed. Stack suggests creating a not-to-do list which is a 'list of things you simply refuse to do'. It can be anything you waste time on during your day, from playing solitaire to having an in-depth discussion about 'Fifty Shades of Grey'. This list is meant to keep you on-task — to do what is necessary for work and nothing else. And yes, no Facebook!

2. The HIT list
The HIT list is for high-impact tasks that can be completed immediately. It is meant to guide your work every day, so you’re more effective with time management.  You should not include more than 10 items, but it can vary from person to person. A Web designer may have up to 20 tasks but only three that can be worked on that day. A writer may only have one or two articles due that day but gets a head start on research for five others. It is a good idea to take a look at your queue for the next day, so you can reorganize the HIT list according to importance and time needed for completion.

3. The master list
This list includes everything that has to be completed at some point, but not necessarily right away. This list should be a work-in-progress, with items shifting in priority due to deadlines or time needed to finish. Tasks can flow into the HIT lists as they become more urgent. Tasks should also be removed to eliminate ones you’ll never get to (cleaning the microwave in the break room) or are out of date (throwing a birthday for your cube mate when it was last week).

A constant flow between the master list and the HIT list is the best way to keep both lists up-to-date. How do you determine on which list you should have a task? Ask yourself: Does it need to be done today? If the answer is yes, it belongs on the HIT list, and if not, it belongs on your master list.

Nikita Pisani at Muovo


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