Share your productivity secrets

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  • Share your productivity secrets
  • rocketman

    emails: Ctrl-A then Delete works quite well

    Go back to work at 9pm and get another 4-6 hours in uninterrupted to clear the backlog.
    Works for me.

    Emails from you direct boss and clients are the ones to worry about. Forget the rest unless you have spare time.

    Prioritise your tasks based on urgency AND importance. Then work out any dependencies between tasks. Long chains of dependent tasks should be started as soon as possible.

    Many smaller independent tasks can be done by others who have a little free time. So try to get them reassigned so you can focus on the big stuff.

    Roughly a third of tasks you are asked to do don’t need doing so just work out which third and only start on them if the rest get done.

    Manage expectations by telling bosses and clients when tasks will be done with realistic deadlines, not optimistic ones. If they moan then negotiate other priorities down the list. If tasks look like they will run late, warn them in advance, don’t wait until the deadline is about to pass.

    Use a simple task and resource planning software tool (i use ms project in a basic way) to make a schedule, and spend 5 mins every morning updating it to check where you are and if there will be a problem hitting deadlines.

    Once you start to feel in control of your time you will be much less stressed!


    bizz.. agree on the urgent & important method (Coveys quadrants). It does help prioritise (although too many things go into Q1 – Urgent & Important)!


    get another job that requires you to do less.


    Learn to say ‘No’. Works for me.


    Waking up this thread again…still no increase in productivity from my side!

    b r

    Someone said to me today.

    “this <action> is a priority for me”


    “ok, it’s not for me, sorry”

    And carried on with what I was already doing.

    +1 My boss, his boss and clients – everything else can swing, except my timesheet and my expenses.

    Premier Icon Imabigkidnow

    If I can echo what people said about email batches.

    In my last job with 50-150 emails a day I’d check at 10am (no earlier on this one .. let people get into work at 9am and fire something your way if they need to) and 2.30-3pm. Might spend 30-45mins on it, but it’s consistant workflow. Get them out the way, then go away and do something more productive until the afternoon batch.

    Batching email checking stops you getting drawn into the trap of having real-time one-line too-fro-ing conversations with people checking mail on the smartphones on the train/toilet/while out and about. You’ll waste the whole day away. If a question you receive on email requires follow ups, pick up the phone.

    Set your email client to only check/refresh every 2-3 hours if you can. stops you being tempted. If you’re in a rush for something in particular you can always press that button to get it to refresh earlier.

    EDIT: I wouldn’t even bother telling people you do this, you’ll most likely have a phone too, so if they’re in a real rush it won’t take them long to learn for themselves that this is a better way of quick communication. Email is electronic letter writing. There’s better ways for near-instant communication
    2ND EDIT: I actually started doing the above because my boss was using emails to me as a notepad for himself. I had to stop running all over the place for him, all the time. He soon learned, it may not be instant, but it’d still get done soon enough.

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth

    My tools are:

    A4 notebook (approx one every 2 months)
    Outlook – single inbox, find things by searching
    Lync IM
    Desk phone
    Mobile phone (calls + texts)

    But none are as powerful as “It’s on the list, but not yet at the top.”


    I can relate to the colleague distraction comments, there’s a balance to be had between maintaining productive relationships and too obviously displaying a do not disturb sign.
    To use the lingo, knowing your objectives and stakeholders is key to keeping on track.


    A lot of people procrastinate. Especially when out of their comfort zone.

    Just do it. It gets easier.
    Learn to say no.
    Prioritise and list.

    Make use of schedules.
    Set times for checking emails.
    Turn the internet off if it’s not needed.
    Avoid unnecessary and time wasting meetings.

    Edit – Use technology to your advantage.
    I use dictation on my phone for emails, when I can’t type, and use a business card scanner for developing potential clients database.


    David Allen/GTD +1

    I use a GTD based app called Things – pricy but works really well for me.


    Wunderlist downloaded, looks good, do I need to go Pro to collaborate?


    Mugboo – Member
    Wunderlist downloaded, looks good, do I need to go Pro to collaborate?

    Nope, as far as I know

Viewing 15 posts - 41 through 55 (of 55 total)

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