As discussed in the previous blog, productivity melts in the summer heat. So it’s a good time to start implementing time-savers so that your staff don’t lose any more minutes from their day than necessary.
Minutes matter, according to a study on work interruptions by Dr. Gloria Mark, associate professor at the University of California. In her study, Dr. Mark shadowed 36 managers, financial analysts, software developers, engineers, and project leaders for three entire days. The researchers timed, to the second, how much uninterrupted time people had while on the phone, working on a document, typing an email or interacting with a colleague.
According to the findings, the average amount of time that people spent on any single activity before being interrupted or switching to something else was only 3.05 minutes.
Juggling so much at once may sound like multi-tasking. But Dave Crenshaw, author of The Myth of Multitasking, argues that the brain is incapable of focusing on multiple tasks at the same time. He says studies show that rather than working simultaneously on several activities, we actually switch rapidly back and forth between tasks. And every time we do, our focus and productivity slips.
With decades of working with GTA employers on staffing solutions to our credit, The Bagg Group has compiled this quick tip list for buoying productivity, minute by minute.
Think about disabling the Reply All button. Neilsen reported great success with this technique as a way to cut down on overloading staff with unnecessary email.
Start off every written communication with your most important info. Known as the inverted pyramid, this style of writing helps people get clear on what they need to know, very quickly. Whether writing emails or enrollment packages, lead with the most pertinent points. Once you get your key info out of the way, you may find you don’t need to add much more. That saves writing and reading time.
Break tasks into small steps. It’s helpful to the time-stressed when you specify the individual steps you that are required. It’s equally useful to help an employee prioritize to fit these tasks into an already busy day.
Think twice about meetings. If a meeting is strictly to impart standard information, consider sending a to-the-point email instead, and inviting questions by email in return.
Assign tasks per skill. Maximize output by ensuring employees aren’t wasting their energy on tasks that don’t require their skill level. Reassign or consider temporary or contract workers to keep focus where you need it.
This summer, make the most of every moment.