A ten-point blog on best practices to adopt for boosting your productivity in 2017.
It’s going to be an interesting 2017. In a world where technology is the key business driver, a continent of ambitious people full of potential are ready to take advantage of it. Across the Asia-Pacific region, economic and cultural change are empowering new freedoms, fresh choices in life. Greater productivity being one.
But great as they are, real productivity gains stem from something else: the decision to act.
Deciding to take action doesn’t isn’t about where you live or the technology you use. It comes from within. It’s a personal decision to improve yourself. And when you improve yourself, you improve your co-workers, company, and productivity too.
So some simple resolutions about how you work are worth making and sticking to. Because they’re decisions that, if you make them habits, can drive greater productivity in 2017 and beyond. Ready for the list? Here goes…
#1: “I will mention out-of-office working to my boss”
When it comes to flexible working, we’re a bit behind those coffee-shop laptop addicts in Europe and America, with more workers in Asia following a traditional day at the office. Do you know that in many cases it’s simply because workers are afraid to ask? So as a first step, just raise the point that one day a week working from somewhere else will infuse the workforce with fresh ideas, new energy… and greater productivity.
#2: “I will take time to listen to my elders”
Office hours keep us away from our families. That’s a shame, because relatives are a great source of tips and support. Your family be terrific life coaches… if only you were around more. Listen to them next time you’re working late at home.
#3: “I will turn my commute into productive time”
How much time do you spend on the subway, face crammed against window? Float the idea to your boss that working from home one day a week would add 96 hours a year to your productivity in lost commutes alone. That’s two weeks of productive output.
#4: “I will notice the world beyond my computer screen”
“Remote working” isn’t just about working from home. It’s about seeing new scenarios, understanding different perspectives. Which makes you better at your job. What if that added 5% to your productivity? Spend your lunch-hour looking and learning instead. They can always reach you on mobile.
#5: “I will make working outside an ad for my company”
When out and about, you’re an ambassador for your company. Be proud while being productive! Plaster your company name on your tablet, use its logo as your screen-saver. People will notice, and may ask questions. Maybe one of them is your next big customer. Now that’s good work/life integration.
#6: “I will treat the important differently to the urgent”
Productive people know how to prioritise. But today’s always-on world often stops us doing important tasks and pulls us into busywork. So don’t be always-on! Look at your mobile app or calendar and sort each day into what makes sense for your company, and what can be batched up at the end of the day. It’s a habit that’ll make you more productive for a lifetime.
#7: “I will be out of office, even while in the office”
Your desk may be great, but any open-plan office has distractions. Would you be more productive if you could get away without leaving the building?
The canteen? The roof garden? The lobby? Anywhere there’s a seat, there’s space to work and hold ad-hoc meetings. Armed with tablet and phone you’ll still be able to collaborate and conference.
#8: “I will critically evaluate one piece of software a month”
Playing around with apps might not sound productive, or great for work/life balance. But it is! When you explore new methods of collaboration and group working, you gain a broader sense of technology and what it can do. Which gives you a faster path to complete projects in the future. So keep your eyes open for tools you can use.
#9: “I will make the business case for working from anywhere”
Think what being able to work beyond the office means. You’re not taking up a desk. You’re using fewer resources. So think about remote working as smart budgeting, not an escape from the striplights. Demonstrate to your team that the right tools can keep you working together, no matter where you are. And your productivity in 2017 will be on the right track.
#10: “I will remember work performance isn’t all about work”
Last one. Our region is famous for overwork. Fatigue, depression, and BOAT (Burned Out At Thirty) are common. Turn your work-life balance and your productivity around – by using collaborative technologies to engage with friends and family as well as workmates. The growing BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) environment is tearing down the walls between “work friends” and “personal friends”, making engagement with one group as easy as the other. So resolve to never forget why you’re working so hard.
What do these resolutions have in common? Yes, they all contribute to the dream of a digital workplace – but they’re also intensely human. Habits that will help not just your company, but your personal health and happiness too. Turning your potential into productivity, profits, and personal performance…without forgetting the people. For some ideas for doing it, ask Arkadin, one of the hottest names in workplace productivity in the West – and now making headway across Asia.
- Remote working not allowed where you work? Have you even asked your boss?
- Productivity isn’t a personal enterprise, but a shared one
- There’s work-life balance to be gained in dead time like your commute
- Work-from-home can lead to productivity tips from the hardest-working people you know: your family!
- Don’t confuse “always-on” with being “always-productive”