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.

Keeping 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

Put 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.

In 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

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.

About the author

Alyssa Mertes

Alyssa is a promo expert with over four years of experience in the industry. She is the Lead Copywriter at Quality Logo Products and has had work published for the Promotional Products Association International and the Advertising Specialty Institute.