Friday Five Business Briefing – May 21, 2021
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Five tips for becoming more effective at work.
Want to do more work with less effort? Check out these five tips for boosting your productivity at work.
Schedule time for email
Email is necessary, but that doesn’t mean it has to take up most of your day. Set a time each day for reading and responding to emails. For example, you might check email three times a day: at the beginning of your day, after lunch and just before your workday ends.
Having dedicated time for email allows more time for highervalue activities. Be sure to let clients and colleagues know about your schedule for answering emails; encourage them to call or text if there’s something urgent that just cannot wait.
Speaking of email, how many subscriptions clutter your inbox without ever getting read? Instead of just hitting delete, take a moment and unsubscribe from anything that no longer brings you value.
Step away from the desk
Spending all day at a desk isn’t just drudgery, it has negative effects on your physical and mental well-being. Numerous studies have shown that movement throughout the workday enhances productivity and memory—and it’s good for your overall health!
Here are some ways to incorporate movement into your day:
- Invest in a height-adjustable desk that allows you to change posture from sitting to standing throughout the day.
- Look for opportunities to walk more, like parking further away and taking stairs instead of elevators.
- When you refill your coffee, go to the station furthest from your desk. If working from home, use your coffee break as a cue to take a quick walk around the house, or go up and down the stairs once or twice.
Too much noise?
If you find noise interfering with your focus, a pair of noise-cancelling headphones or earbuds can help maintain concentration. Some offer a transparency mode so you can still hear what’s going on around you and you’re not entirely cut off from your surroundings.
If you’re new to noise-cancelling devices, consider the factors Wirecutter looks at when making its selections: efficacy of noise canceling, sound quality, battery life (in wireless models) and overall comfort.
Learn something new
Even the most successful among us have room for improvement. One way to get to the top of your game—or stay there—is to keep learning. This doesn’t mean going back to school, though it could! Get curious and make discoveries through:
- Podcasts and videos, like TED Talks
- Your industry association
- Checking out a competitor
- Learning about social media (for the first time or exploring a channel that’s new to you)
- Online courses
- Working with a coach or mentor
- Trying something new in your business
Learn to say “no”
If you have a hard time saying “no,” you’re in good company. Many people struggle with turning down ideas, activities and requests. However, this little word is one of our most potent productivity tools. When you realize that saying “no” doesn’t make you rude and it shouldn’t make you feel guilty, you’ll have more time and energy for the things you say yes to.
Here’s a quick read and video for people pleasers to learn how to say “no.”
Give it a try
Try these five productivity-boosting techniques and see how they help you get more done.
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