The productivity conundrum:
I was speaking with a friend yesterday. We met after a quite a bit of time and I was enquiring about his job and how things are going professionally? He described the happenings in the office as “Bottomless Pit”. He said how much ever he and his team are working, things are not moving forward. But the number of hours he and his team work has been increasing steadily. This again went into the age old discussion of being busy and being productive. My humble opinion is the topic of productivity is least understood.
What is productivity?
You can be productive in only one thing. That is in your self-improvement. You can get productive and hence can do something that is useful to the company or the corporate for which you trade your time for money. In Many cases, most people understand the word productivity as word just used to mention how capable are you in the work front? Or in helping your corporate make money. This too an extent it is true as you have to be productive to help your company make money. But people forget to improve themselves in order to be productive. If one just tries to make money without improving one-self, it will lead to BURN OUT.
One has to follow these 5 things to check and improve his productivity check. Those 5 things are
- Being strategic
You should have a strategy to improve your working style and working environment. As in any strategy you should first come up with clear goals and the road map to achieve it.
- Defining a metric
Any goal is only good if it can be measured on some metrics. If you are working long hours, then that can be a metric. No. of hours worked to the amount of work got done. There is a new concept called ROWE “Result or Return Oriented Work Environment”. In here people are paid not to the number of hours but on the result produced by them. So the above said metric should always help to check your productivity.
- One change a time
This focus on one thing means, one thing of distraction. To improve productivity you have to remove that one most distracting thing from your environment. The planning of this can be done in the strategy part and we can check if it has worked in the metric part.
- Behavior check
Don’t try to focus on too many things to improve. It is all about creating few habits and sticking to it religiously. This sticking to habit is called as behavior and one has to be aware of his behavior once he set goals, defined metric and removed distractions. He has to make sure his behavior of habit building is consistent and progressive
- Partner in crime
Hold a person accountable. Tell your plans to your friend and he will be your red signal whenever you stray from the process. A person to give continuous feedback is a great thing, but it is not easy to acquire. You can offer the same help to him, if he wants to be productive and make him a partner in crime.
These steps will help you immensely in increasing your productivity.