Be More Productive At Work

Use one planner

  • It does not matter whether it is paper or electronic.
  • Leave it open and refer to it often.
  • Make it the only place you enter appointments and tasks.
  • Eliminate post-it notes and scraps of paper.

Block out time in your schedule to work on projects

  • Once a project is written in your planner, there is a greater chance you will do it.
  • Divide large projects into steps and put each step in your planner; give step #1 a due date, do the same for step #2, step #3, etc.
  • This system helps you complete projects that may now feel overwhelming.

Set daily priorities

  • Make your daily task list “doable” and realistic.
  • Focus on 2-3 important tasks or projects each day.
  • If you just have a few minutes before a meeting or appointment, complete a less time-consuming task.

Don’t let email distract you

  • Resist the temptation to check it every time it “dings”. (Turn it off.)
  • In the morning, prepare for your day and then check your email.
  • Handle email the way you do mail; respond, move it to an electronic folder, flag it (if you need time to think about it) or delete.
  • Use electronic file folders instead of keeping hard copies.

Hold phone calls until your task is finished

  • Screen calls or send them directly to voicemail.
  • Schedule call times (just like a meeting) and put in calendar.
  • Leave a detailed message — a return call may not be necessary.

Assign a location for desktop papers

  • Set up file folders for the top of your desk – Some examples are: 1) Action Now 2) Action Later 3) Pending (or Waiting) 4) To Read Later 5) To File
  • Go through loose papers daily and discard papers no longer needed.
  • Move paper to appropriate desktop file folder or file drawer.

Maintain the organization. You’ve worked hard to achieve it.