Posts in Productivity Tools
Getting the Most Out of Your Day

There are so many ideas and projects that we dream about doing. Some may be more immediate plans, such as launching a project at work, while others are more long-term, like writing a book. In so many cases, there doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day. The demands on our time, which include work and our personal responsibilities, are so many. It can often feel overwhelming, yet some people can do so much with the amount of time they have.

If we all have the same amount of time available in the day, then the only way to be more efficient is to make better use of the hours we do have. Efficiency will come from focusing on the work that will best give us the results we are seeking and from organizing your time as best as possible. This is not an exhaustive list of strategies for how to best organize your time, but they can help you start improving the impact of the time you have available.

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One Way to Increase Your Productivity: Keep What You Need Close

Each day, we have the same amount of time to do what we set out to accomplish. We can’t create any more time, and there also has to be enough time to rest and do other activities outside of work. It makes sense, therefore, to use the time we do have for work as productively as possible. The more efficient you are, the easier you will make your daily work for yourself. Every second that you can save in your everyday routine will add up and contribute to more useful time overall.

One way to be more productive is to keep everything you need, both digitally and physically, close at hand and easily accessible. Knowing where everything is located and being able to find it with no wasted effort will save you tremendous time. Suppose you spend an average of one minute a day looking for documents or any tool you need to do your work. Of course, this amount of time is on the lower end, as we generally waste much time searching for lost emails, files, or sorting through pens that don’t work. If you work 250 days a year, that is four hours a year you spend looking for lost items. Now suppose the average goes up to five minutes a day-- that adds up to over 20 hours a year.

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How to Streamline Project Management and Effectiveness

One mechanism that we have found works well for following up on and managing complex projects at our company, Celaque, is holding recurring meetings. We meet every week or every two weeks to go over a set agenda. The person who leads the meetings establishes the agenda. We make major decisions as a group and guide the projects forward. Since starting these meetings, we have found we can make better choices and move faster because there is an added accountability to the group.

Meetings have been overscheduled and can even be negative if not appropriately deployed because they can waste a lot of time. On the other hand, they can also be very powerful if used for the right kinds of reasons. In the case of committee-type groups that come together to work on projects, they are very impactful. Multifaceted areas or plans often require input from numerous points of view because there are so many variables to take into consideration. A person may look at the work from one perspective, but another person may view it from a different one. The best product will, therefore, emerge.

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Problem Solving for the Office and Your Personal Life

We spend most of the day at work, solving problems on a daily basis. What we often forget is that many of the tools for problem solving that we use at work can be very useful for our personal lives as well.

Problem solving for life follows a similar process to that in business. Our personal and professional lives are always busy, and sometimes we don’t give our personal difficulties the same type of attentiveness we give to our business problems. It is in the personal sphere, though, where we can have the most impact in our lives overall, freeing more time and space to be more creative and feel fulfilled.

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