See if these productivity killers describe you or someone with whom you work…
- Procrastinator: That thing that you don’t want to do isn’t going to be any more appealing if you put it off for hours, days or weeks. Do it or decide you’ll never do it but quit avoiding it and making yourself miserable.
- Hoarder of information: Being the holder of all of the information simply means other people on the team are in the dark. A team that’s working half in the dark can’t reach the goal in any kind of timely or profitable way. Having more information doesn’t make you more valuable. Working collaboratively, productively and successfully makes you more valuable. Share what you know because informed people do better work.
- Worrier: You know that worrying changes nothing and yet you worry anyway. If you must, let yourself get all whacked out about this thing…for 60 seconds. Then spend the next two minutes in a mini meditation. Try this. Then get back to work.
- Disengaged from the effort: Like the kid who took his ball and went home because the other kids wouldn’t play by his rules, many adults do the same thing in a work situation that’s not going their way. Don’t be an adult brat. Sometimes you get your way and sometimes you don’t. If you’re in a situation where you never get your way and you’re miserable, you probably need to find a different job.
- Multitasker: Surely you’ve read enough about the science of multitasking and how it’s a myth about enhancing productivity. You must be able to manage many projects which is entirely different from multitasking. Get better at choosing and focusing and you won’t feel the need to multitask.
- Having an Open Door policy: Being constantly available at the whim of everyone in the office doesn’t make good business sense. Co-workers may think you’re accommodating and nice, but you’ll also fail to get things done and quite possibly lose your mind. Every person required to use their brain in order to get things done needs quiet time. Shutting your door, blocking time on your calendar for focused work, working in another area of the building or just notifying your team that you need some focus time is not only smart it’s necessary.
- Winging it: If you’re ok with people knowing you didn’t practice your pitch, presentation, interview, scene etc., then wing it; but you’ll never fool them into thinking you did. Lack of preparation is too obvious. I know – I’ve done it and still cringe at the thought. Almost everybody hates practicing of any kind. It’s boring and repetitive but you’ll never get better at anything without it. Amateurs wing it. Pros practice – a lot.
- Being constantly connected: Looking at your smart phone is a habit not a necessity. If you think your job requires that you check your smart phone 18 times an hour (a conservative estimate) you’re fooling yourself. You can’t think (the skill that makes you valuable) if you’re cramming your time and your brain with less important tech tasks. Put it down and boost real productivity.
- Overscheduling yourself: “Wow, I am so BUSY.” This phrase indicates importance. Busy people are in demand and therefore important. Except that they’re not – necessarily. Everyone is as busy as they choose to be, but if you’re so busy you can’t eat well, sleep enough or get sufficient exercise you’re on the road to a breakdown and even before you get there your results will be sub-par.
Do you have any experience with these? Yourself or someone with whom you work? What’s your story?