Beyond the To-Do List: 8 Tips for How to Be Productive at Work

Productive employee in office
July 15, 2019

Even the most dedicated and diligent employees in the world find it hard to be productive 100 percent of the time. The human body isn’t wired for to be perfectly focused and efficient, but there are lots of things you can do to make the most of your work hours so that you can enjoy personal time when the workday is over.

Here are eight strategies for how to be productive at work and more satisfied with how your career is progressing.

1. Minimize Workplace Distractions

Whether you work in a corporate office or at home, distractions are inevitable in the workplace. In a shared space, you may encounter loud coworkers and meetings that disrupt your work flow. At home, your attention may be divided among work, kids, pets, and the refrigerator nearby. Try your best to situate yourself in a physical setting without noise, other people, or excess paperwork lying around so that you can focus on the most important tasks of the day.

2. Take Control Over Multi-Tasking

Multi-tasking is often an overrated productivity strategy because the human brain becomes overwhelmed and therefore unproductive when there are too many things to focus on at once. Instead, limit your multi-tasking endeavors to two things at a maximum so that you can check more items off your to-do list.

3. Take Breaks at Work to Reenergize

Taking breaks at work may seem counterintuitive for productivity, but research shows that our minds and bodies need occasional breaks to maintain focus throughout the day. Go for a short walk around your office, grab a healthy snack from the break room, or get some fresh air outside between assignments or at least every couple of hours.

4. Reduce Time Spent on Social Media

Social media helps us stay connected to the rest of the world, but it is also a major distractor at work. To increase your productivity, only allow yourself to check social media at lunchtime and after work instead of more often at your desk throughout the day.

5. Keep Your Desk Organized

A messy desk is a major risk factor for unproductivity, so take some time to get your paperwork and personal items in check. At the end of each day, get your work organized for the next day so that you’ll be ready to be productive first thing in the morning.

6. Break Big Tasks into Smaller Portions

Large projects can feel overwhelming and too burdensome to tackle when you’re disorganized and lacking motivation. When you’re assigned a big task, take a few moments to break it down into smaller and more manageable portions. This way, you can note your progress when you complete a portion and see a light at the end of the tunnel rather than feeling overwhelmed.

7. Don’t Underestimate the To-Do List

Even in the modern working world, to-do lists have a valuable place in the office. Whether it’s on a simple Post-It note, a large whiteboard, or a smartphone app, there is something very effective about writing down tasks and satisfying about crossing them off upon completion.

8. Choose a Productive Environment

NYC Office Suites provides flexible temporary office space in Manhattan to help you be more productive at work, as well as on-demand meeting rooms and virtual office solutions. All of these offerings contribute to a more productive work environment, with customizations available to suit your unique business needs. If you’ve tried all of these tips and still struggle with productivity in the workplace, please contact us to learn how NYC Office Suites can help!

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