By Jason W. Womack, MEd, MA
Here is a great strategy for increasing productivity, one that is especially helpful on busy days (back-to-back meetings) and when you return from a long weekend or vacation and have a lot of catch-up work to do:
Identify about a dozen 10- to 20-minute activities you need to do over the next 10 days. Bring these small work chunks with you wherever you go. While waiting for a meeting to start or for a delayed flight to depart, you’ll be able to reply to an e-mail or phone call; in other instances, you might have enough time to review materials for a project you are working on. If you’re prepared, you also can confirm appointments, draft responses, or map out a project outline.
I can promise you that sometime during the two weeks, someone is going to arrive late for an appointment, cancel a meeting, or otherwise keep you waiting. When that (inevitably) happens, you can review your inventory and pick something—anything—to work on.
Identifying and planning for these blocks of “extra” time can be a key to increased profitability. As you plan for the coming month, make optimizing your productivity a priority. Start with this one idea. Focus on saving time, doing deeper thinking, or fixing problems that get in the way of higher performance.