Five Interruptions NOT to Avoid: Why Some Distractions Are Important

Five Interruptions NOT to Avoid: Why Some Distractions Are Important

"One way to boost our will power and focus is to manage our distractions instead of letting them manage us."—Daniel Goleman, American author and psychologist Imagine a completely distraction-free office, where you can focus totally and productively, where no one ever calls you, chats outside your office in the hallway, plays their music too loudly, or pops in for a quick question. Imagine a place where you could spend hours upon hours single-tasking to your heart's content, churning out work by the barrel-load. Wouldn't that be heaven? I’m thinking NO. Oh maybe for a time, but it gets old. Unless you're a solitary worker with no communications with others (a rare occurrence in this era), social interaction remains a must. Although I'm a big believer in warding off most … [Read more...]

Increasing Productivity at Work: A Modest Survey

Increasing Productivity at Work: A Modest Survey by Laura Stack #productivity

"Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning." —Benjamin Franklin, U.S. Founding Father. Someone once told me, "This world would be a nice place if it weren't for all the people." He meant it humorously, but the statement stuck with me because of the grain of truth at its core. While we tend to work best as parts of teams, we also get annoyed with people who get in our way or won't listen to us. It's so much easier to take charge and just lay down the law than to compromise, but for most of us, that's not an option. In a recent survey, I asked my newsletter readers, "If you were going to increase your productivity at work, what would need to happen?" Although some admitted they needed to improve their work skills, a full … [Read more...]

Tightening Your Focus

The modern leader's biggest problems rarely stem from a lack of commitment or work ethic. Most of us are quite willing to work hard, and often for a distressing number of hours. And it's not as if we don't understand time management; anyone who has made it to a significant leadership position has mastered the basics, or they wouldn't occupy their current post. The real problem is that many leaders haven't learned to expand and refocus their understanding of time management to take into account the realities of their new positions—even as they accrue more and more power over the lives and livelihoods of more and more people. As you climb the corporate ladder, your ability to focus on your strategic priorities becomes increasingly important. With every rung, your actions impact the company … [Read more...]

Ruthless Productivity

Looking for the SPEED formula? Click here. "This is a ruthless world, and one must be ruthless to cope with it." -- Charlie Chaplin, American actor. "Human nature is potentially aggressive and destructive and potentially orderly and constructive." -- Margaret Mead, American anthropologist The word "ruthless" often gets a bad rap in the business world—and well it should, when companies mistreat clients, vendors, or employees. But in two business cases, ruthlessness is acceptable (even essential) within reasonable limits: when striving for a greater market share, and when trying to maximize your personal productivity. Both flavors of ruthlessness will make you unpopular among some groups—your competitors on the one hand, and certain co-workers on the other. But you don't work for your … [Read more...]

Productivity Minute Video: Eliminate Distractions from Your Environment

Laura Stack, The Productivity Pro(R), shares tips on decreasing distractions to boost productivity. (C) 2012 Laura Stack. All Rights Reserved. … [Read more...]

Dealing With Distractions and Interruptions: Strategies for Staying Focused on Important Tasks

Dealing With Distractions and Interruptions: Strategies for Staying Focused on Important Tasks by Laura Stack #productivity

More than ever, modern workers are bedeviled by distractions and interruptions that pull us away from the key activities of our jobs. If it's not your noisy office-mates, it's the siren song of the Internet, or an over-fascination with email. Therefore, it's imperative that you learn to trim your activities down to the few things that are truly important, so you can actually get your job done and become both the envy of your peers and the apple of your boss's eye. Proper focus requires discipline and mastery to achieve, like any other skill. In this article, I'll help you get started in your quest to wield your focus like a blade, stripping away the things that keep you from getting your work done on time and under budget. Let's start with one of the worse culprits: your … [Read more...]