There are so many things we can optimize to become as productive as humanly possible – to-do lists, eating habits, sleep patterns, break times. And now, we have access to even more tools to help us get even more done. Here is a list of 8 productivity tools and gadgets that boost productivity at work and at home.
How do you take breaks, if you take them at all? Do you grab a quick coffee on the go? Chat with your coworkers? And most importantly, do you feel relaxed and recharged after?
In North America, it’s easy to feel overworked and like there isn’t enough time to relax in the day. And you’re not alone – reports agree that Americans work longer hours and don’t take enough breaks.
While the average North American workday is long, work culture, productivity, and break taking is vastly different around the world. Here are some interesting workplace habits that are common in other countries. They may be different, but they all share one common concept: breaks are a necessity for productivity.
Writing to-do lists is a helpful way to remind yourself of everything you have to do that day, from tasks at work, to picking up groceries on the way home. But their effectiveness depends on how you write them.
There’s no use in writing a to-do list if you don’t actually check off any of the items you need to get done. It’s easy to overestimate what you can accomplish and to write down every little errand and thing you should do, instead of focusing on priorities.
The DeskTime blog covers a lot of information about productivity and how to work smart. But sometimes, all you need is a little inspiration from the pros to kick it into high gear and get things done.
So learn some lessons and get motivated with these quotes about productivity from wildly successful people.
It’s tempting to put off the unpleasant things you don’t want to do. We’re naturally predisposed to do things that make us happy, so if a task is causing discomfort, we’ll find ways to procrastinate and put it off.
Procrastination may be a natural instinct, but it’s also a huge workplace productivity killer. You’re not being efficient if you’re pulling all-nighters or doing busy work to avoid the big stuff. This blog post covers why we’re so prone to doing it anyway, and how to stop procrastinating.
Mark Twain once said that if you eat a live frog first thing in the morning, you know that the rest of your day will be better because the worst is behind you. After all, you’ve already eaten a live frog, what’s the worst that could happen?
Author Brian Tracy applies this same theory to productivity and business. But of course instead of “eat a frog,” he means “complete your worst task.” This can be an assignment you’re dreading, a major project with a tight deadline, or a high-priority task that’s giving you anxiety. Whatever it is, do that one thing right away.
Team building activities are often met with a groan. Nobody wants to spend time playing awkward games with coworkers. But team building doesn’t have to be boring. The right team building exercises can help your employees bond, which in turn boosts engagement and productivity.
Companies with engaged employees are more productive, as discovered by Gallup’s State of the American Workplace survey. Companies in the top 25% of Gallup’s Q12 Client Database have significantly higher productivity, profitability, and customer ratings, and less turnover and absenteeism than companies in the bottom 25%. In fact, engagement is more important to workplace satisfaction than company policies and perks.
It’s clear that engaged employees are productive employees, but how do you increase engagement at the workplace? When 70% of the American workforce reports feeling “not engaged” or “actively disengaged,” this seems like a tall order.
When every minute of the day is filled with stuff to do, it can be hard to squeeze in time for self-improvement and growth. If you’re yearning for a few extra moments to learn something new and interesting, what about using your time on the go, commuting from one place to another? How, you ask? By listening to podcasts.
One way to make sure your day is off to a productive start is by exercising. It doesn’t have to be anything rigorous – even a brisk walk is enough to get your blood flowing and energy up. If you like to cycle, consider commuting to work by bike. It kills two birds with one stone – you get to exercise by going someplace you’re already supposed to get to.
Productivity is generally talked about using cold, unfeeling data, but it might help to get a little mushy now and then.
Emotional intelligence, or EI, is a concept that thought leaders and hiring managers love to talk about. But does it have a place in the discourse of productivity-minded leaders? It’s not that some managers don’t care about their employees’ feelings; they would just prefer to focus on aspects of the work environment that can be easily controlled.