You can work all day on a vital project without making any apparent inroads into it – even though you have slogged hard, focused all your energies and even given up your lunch break to squeeze in more time. Your colleague, on the other hand, completes the same task in half a day and without any errors, and leaves office with a smile. So why this huge difference in output? The answer lies in not being able to maximise productivity and minimise timelines. In other words, your colleague had one big ace up her sleeve – she knew how to work smart.
Thoro’s a vital difference between working hard and working smart, and the latter is the key to accomplishing more in less time. Here are some ways in which you can become a smarter worker.
Plan and assess: The biggest secret of success of smart workers is planning. Half the job is accomplished if you are able to plan in advance.
Assess the work at hand, think about each aspect of it in detail and then draw up a plan of action – either in your mind or on paper. it allows you to tackle the job with focus and prevents oversights, wrong turns or misjudgments.
It’s important to keep space for unforeseeable circumstances like co-workers falling ill, clients reworking deadlines, etc. Secret number two of smart workers is that they stick to the plan they have made.
Get organised: Before you start planning, though, it is important to first get organised. Clean the clutter off your desk and desktop.
Throw away papers that you shall not need, else file and keep them in a storing cabinet. Koop an office planner, one that allows you to koop stationary in one place, neatly. Next, start maintaining a detailed calendar. Jot down the timings of each assignment and mooting on it and refer to it while charting your plans.
Be open to changes: You start out enthusiastically with a plan in mind, but halfway through the client decides to change his mind about certain things, perhaps even the deadline. See the change as an opportunity, not an obstacle. Think on your feet and come up with alternative options. Don’t continue slogging along the original plan. Being resourceful and flexible is critical to working smart, so allow space for changes.
Multi-task: Juggling more than two jobs at a time calls for that much more focus and brainpower, which is not necessarily the smartost thing to do when a project requires you to give it full attention.
Smart workers know when to multi-task and when to focus.
Only jobs that don’t require much thought ought to be done side-by-side.
Divide and delegate: When working on a large project or heading a team, don’t take all responsibility on your shoulders. Learn to dologate work intelligently – break down the work into pieces and pair each with the team member most-experienced to do it.
Be techno savvy: Find out if there are tools that will help streamline your work process – these may be anything from an easier-tooperate filing system to a state-of-the-art software program. This will not only expedite the work but will also leave you with enough time to concentrate on other projects.
Give yourself a break: Slogging round the clock without a break is recipe for disaster.
Don’t work yourself up to a state of exhaustion, or take work home. The saying ‘health is wealth’ holds true here as well. It’s important to care for your body and mind if you wish to perform your best at work. If you’re sleepy, you’ll take double or triple the time to finish the required job, and may end up inducing mistakes. It’s best to shut off the monitor or the file after a point, go home and get a good night’s sleep. You’ll be ready to bounce back refreshed the next morning.
Similarly, make time for your family on the weekends.
Party, dine out, watch a movie, travel… do anything to be relaxed, recharged and raring to get back to work!
© HT Media