Productivity Tips from Professionals

46436 2020-08-12 00:42

MIT surveyed nearly 20,000 professionals from around the world - 50% from North America, 21% from Europe, 19% from Asia, and the rest from Australia, South America, and Africa. Takeaways are …

1. Sort tasks by importance and act with a clear goal.

  • Before writing anything of any length, prepare an outline in a logical order to help you stay on track.
  • Revise your daily calendar the night before to emphasize your priorities. Next to each agenda on your schedule, write down your goals.
  • Send a detailed agenda to all participants before any meeting.
  • When embarking on a large project, sketch out preliminary conclusions as soon as possible.
  • Before reading any lengthy material, determine your specific purpose for it.

2. Dealing with information & task overload.

  • Skip most messages by looking at the subject and sender.
  • Make daily processes, like getting dressed or eating breakfast, a routine so you don’t spend time thinking about them.
  • Check your device’s screen every hour, rather than every few minutes.
  • Break large projects into sections and reward yourself when you complete each section.
  • Delegate tasks that don’t interfere with your top priorities, when feasible.
  • Set aside time in your daily schedule to deal with emergencies and unexpected events.

3. Your colleagues need short meetings, responsive communication, and clear direction.

  • Respond immediately to messages from those who are important to you.
  • To capture the audience’s attention, speak from some notes rather than reading a prepared text.
  • Limit any meeting to 90 minutes or less, but preferably less. At the end of each session, delineate the next steps and responsibilities for those steps.
  • To improve your team’s performance, establish procedures to prevent future mistakes instead of playing the blame game.
  • Establish clear goals and success metrics for any team effort.

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