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4 Easy Ways to Boost Your Workplace Productivity

We all know what it’s like to fall behind at work. Getting marred by our responsibilities at the office is easier than we’d like it to be, that’s for sure. What we tend to forget is that it can be just as easy to reverse the situation with a little know-how and initiative.

Want to prevent your productivity from slipping? Want to ensure that it won’t slip again in the near future?

Keep the following tips in mind:

1) Stay Organized

Word on the web is that “the average worker wastes 2.5 hours a week looking for documents missing in poorly organized electronic files.”

The trick, then, is to be better than the “average worker” — by staying organized.

worker cubicle computer organizedKeeping track of your daily responsibilities is simpler than you might think. If, for example, your job is done at a computer, just open yourself a brand spanking new spreadsheet or word document and plan out the rest of your tasks for the week (or month, or year). Save the file to your computer’s desktop and remember to keep it open throughout your workday (and during all workdays from then on), remembering to check it periodically to ensure that you’re completing key tasks.

If you don’t have access to a computer at work, consider investing in a daily planner (the old fashioned paper kind) to organize your tasks accordingly.

2) Add Some Plants

potted plantPut a plant in your office and find out first hand why the notion that nature promotes positivity is true. No joke!

Want proof?

In an eight-month study conducted by Texas A&M University, researchers found that plant life had an observable, positive impact on workplace productivity. Among other results, the study showed that “problem-solving skills, idea generation and creative performance improve substantially in workplace environments that include flowers and plants.”

The lesson? Again, put a plant in your office!

3) Remove Your Distractions

If you’re a social network addict or an obsessive cell phone user, be sure not to let those pastimes obstruct you from focusing on your work.

coworkers computer telephone distractionIn fact, with reports suggesting that “distractions caused by social media, e-mail and badly designed office technology may cost a 1,000-worker company more than $10 million a year,” it would probably be best not to do your texting or social media-ing at work at all (even if your place of work doesn’t employ 1,000 or more people). Keep internet activity and e-mailing to an absolute minimum and keep the cell phone off.

NOTE: If your job involves promoting your company online via social networking or similar means, feel free disregard the above.

4) Laugh

Coworkers laughing.Yes, you read that right.

Believe it or not, studies show that there are a number of benefits to laughter in the workplace:

  • Laughter increases productivity
  • Those who laugh out loud are more creative at problem solving
  • Those who laugh have better memory retention
  • Those who laugh experience less stress
  • Laughter is a major coping mechanism
  • Those who laugh together may work more effectively together

It pays to keep in mind how important it is to laugh on the job. So long as it doesn’t interfere with your task at hand, try to have a good laugh from time to time at work, especially with coworkers.

Do you use any of the abovementioned tips to stay productive at work? Do you have any other tips for improving workplace productivity? Let us know in the comments below!



Joseph Giorgi

Joseph is the head of the Media Team at Quality Logo Products. He's a video specialist, blogger, perfectionist, and all-around likeable guy. When he's not busy focusing on the nitty-gritty details of his written and visual work, he's normally listening to bad 80s music and scouring the internet for useless information on useless subjects. You can also connect with Joe on Google+.

Comments

  1. amy

    Awesome tips, Joe! I know laughter always helps me get through a hectic day. Just by taking a few minutes and blowing off some steam and laughing at a joke or story is enough to clear my mind and reduce my stress.

    I’ve never heard the statistics about having a plant in an office, I may have to break down now and get a little one. I’ve always thought about getting a cactus, those are pretty resilient to people without green thumbs, right? LOL

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Yeah, laughter definitely helps break up the day. As far as the longevity of cacti — I’m not sure. I’ve never been big into plants, but after coming across that particular study, I’m half-tempted to put one in my office as well.

  2. Mandy Kilinskis

    I definitely think that I need to get a plant. I’ll just have to find the right one that flourishes under florescent lighting and no water on the weekends. I’m sure that they exist…but researching that requires effort.

    Laughter is definitely the best medicine (At least for productivity. If it’s for a real disease I’m going to pick antibiotics every time). Laughing definitely makes me feel less stressed and it eases the ‘ah god it’s work don’t smile ever’ feeling that can sometimes hang in the air. Not here, of course, but elsewhere.

    • Joseph Giorgi

      While it didn’t surprise me to find out that laughter reduces stress, I was somewhat surprised to hear that “those who laugh have better memory retention.” That’s pretty cool.

      LOLOLOLOL. I can practically feel my memory improving as we speak. :)

  3. Eric

    I know it sounds like crazy talk, and I may as well be a Christopher Walken in “Blast From The Past,” waiting for nuclear winter in my fallout shelter…but honestly? I gave up Facebook for good a long while ago, haven’t looked back, and man, have I been so much more productive. Just in general. I actually read a book for the first time in years. Sure, I can imagine it helps you get down to brass tacks at the office, but it carries over to your personal life, too.

    Today’s a blustery day and a good one for a post like this one to go out. Nice article, Joe, and whether or not it was deliberate…good timing, too. :)

    • Amanda

      Great point Eric! So many people these days waste hours on FB each day! I deleted mine for maybe 1-2 years, a couple years back, and I only missed it a little. I rejoined in 2010, and use it much less now. I enjoy it, but it does kind of suck you in, and then you think, where did those past two hours go?

    • Joseph Giorgi

      It wasn’t deliberately timed, but thanks! :)

      I agree: I try not to get too involved with Facebook unless it’s work-related. To be honest, I almost feel bad about not using Facebook more often, as there are people who sometimes try to get in touch with me that way whose messages I don’t end up seeing for weeks. Now that I think about it, I should probably check my messages when I get home.

  4. JPorretto

    I had a plant, now its gone. All down hill from here I guess =)

    I think Laughter is the best advice (and medicine haha). Happy people are pretty much better at everything (save for tortured artists). As long as it’s not at a high amounts of Lithium type happiness, it can only be a positive thing.

    • Joseph Giorgi

      You’d better get a new plant, ASAP!

      But yeah, I never really thought about the many positive attributes of laughter (other than that it’s simply fun to laugh) until I read about those studies. It makes sense that those who know how to laugh and have a good time at the workplace are more likely to be proactive in the workplace.

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