Sometimes people who seem busy are just very distracted. Eliminating distractions in the office and in the field makes for a productive and friendly work environment. Here are some of the most common distractions and how to deal with them:
- Talkative co-workers. Ask.com surveyed more than 2,000 workers, and their No. 1 complaint was noisy co-workers. When someone wants to talk, it's hard to stay focused on a task. When they start talking, simply remind them that you're trying to meet a deadline, but you'd like to talk over lunch.
- The boss. Bosses can be a big killer of productivity. Who wants to feel like they're being micromanaged? Employees should feel like they're able to work independently and ask the boss questions when needed. This is what team meetings are for anyway, right?
- Email alerts. Every time your phone dings letting you know you've got an email, you probably feel like you need to check it right away. Do yourself a favor and turn off the mail notifications in your settings. This way, you can set aside time for checking and answering emails rather than stopping your work every few minutes.
- Unstructured time. I love my planner. I always know what I have happening and when I can set aside time for unplanned emergencies. It's a problem if you're starting your day not knowing what you have on your plate or how you're going to tackle it. If you don't do anything else today (Ok, this week), get yourself a planner or use a calendar on your computer to set task reminders and fill in important meeting dates.
A lot of distractions are small, but five minutes here and there can add up to a lot of time over the course of days and weeks. Eliminate these distractions one at a time, and you'll begin to see how much you can accomplish.
Set aside some time in your day to get on Twitter @HVACLearning and tell me about how you overcome distractions.