Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Organizing a More Productive Day

The economy has put the world in a spin and many workers fear the loss of their job.  The more productive you are at work, the less likely you will be picked when downsizing becomes the inevitable.  Make sure you are the one your employer look to for high productivity. 
To organize a productive day at work, you must first look at your week as a whole.  Whether you work 8-5 Monday - Friday, or if you work a different schedule every day, you need to take time on the day before your work week starts.  For many in the workforce today, that day is Sunday.  I will use Sunday as my example, but you can use any day of the week.  First, on Sunday evening, take a look at your schedule for the week and look at the days you are booked with meetings or appointments.  Next, look at the days you have time not currently filled.  Schedule in time for projects you are working on and time for correspondence.  Schedule time for your to do list and any other item you need to work on this week.  Not only are you looking at your day schedule, you need to look at the evenings too.  Many families spend time at practices and games, so scheduling after school appointments, to do list time and family time is tough. 
Every day should have time in the morning and early afternoon scheduled to look and answer at e-mail.  If you leave your e-mail open all day, you will get nothing else accomplished.  If your are used to looking at e-mail all day long, this will be a tough habit to break, but it will improve your productivity. 
If you return a number of phone calls on a daily basis, that time too, should be scheduled.  Obviously, something can come up that will disrupt your scheduled day, but this will not happen everyday.  Try to stick to your schedule as close as possible to be the most productive.  If you can, mark out time for these on Outlook so others do not schedule you for a meeting during these times, do so. 
If possible, close your door during times you need to really concentrate.  If you work in an open office area, try to put a note on your cubicle to let everyone know you are busy, or try a conference room for some privacy if you are interrupted constantly during the day. 
Organizing your week will allow you to remember the projects and items that must be completed that week and you will become much more productive.