When it comes to being an employee, we all want to be productive, especially if we are striving to move up the corporate ladder. Many times we confuse productivity with the amount of hours we put in at the office. While increased productivity can, from time to time, require more hours at the office, it is not always required.
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Productivity is often about generating more creative ideas and solutions to problems. Our traditional office set up, sitting in front of a computer for seven to eight hours a day, is not always conducive to productivity. Thus, to increase productivity we need to change how we think about work and where it needs to take place. Here are four ways to be a more productive employee.
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1. Mix it Up
Instead of spending your entire work day in your office or cubicle, try a change of scenery. For example, work in the conference room, the lunchroom, or some other space that is a change from your normal working space. To take it a step further, you may be able to ask a manager for permission to work from home one or more days a week, which would allow you to work from a home office, a local coffee shop or even outside when the weather is appropriate.
Changing your working space from time to time allows for more productivity that would not otherwise take place under the monotony of working from the same space a day after day.
2. Meet Outside the Office
Many of us are familiar with lunch or even dinner meetings with clients or colleagues. These meetings allow for a lighter mood, which can help the flow of creativity. You could also try meeting up for a walk in the park, a yoga class or a happy hour. This time together allows for co-workers to bond together, get their blood flowing, and relax, which often allows ideas to flow more easily.
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3. Take Some Free Time
Take an hour or so out of your work week to work on whatever it is you want to work on. Companies such as Google have found that allowing employees the free time to work on whatever it was they wanted, generated very successful ventures for the company. Gmail is just one idea that occurred as a result of this free time for employees. You may have to speak with a manager or even higher level executives to get approval. But if you can convince management this would be beneficial to the company, it will be worth it.
4. Don’t Forget Your Health
Finally, having a regular workout plan, or getting in regular physical activity can be extremely beneficial in generating productivity. Many health professionals have touted the benefits of physical activity. One of these benefits is stress reduction.
Reducing stress is key in allowing ideas to flow freely, and opening up mental space for productivity. Of course, there are a number of other benefits to exercise, which also help to contribute to increased productivity. For example, improving overall physical health, which can lead to fewer sick days. Improved physical and mental well-being are major benefits that can help increase productivity.
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Being productive is not a stagnant matter. You are not either productive or not productive. You can control your productivity as an employee with a few simple steps. Upping your productivity does not always require spending more time in the office. In fact, it may be helpful to spend less time in the office or in your cubicle.
You may want to try some of these tips to help you become a better employee. Find out what works best for you and stick with it or change it up as needed. It could lead to a raise, a promotion or other perks!
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