Whilst many of us work in offices where the organization is responsible for most things, decisions about efficient working practices in our work area can be reduced by what we are allowed to do. Yet there are a number of steps we are able to take that we do have control of.
One of the best ways to be more effective in your work is to take control back, wherever possible. By working on your own area where you work, you can ensure that you feel better and much more in control. This can easily lead to a more confident and capable performance.
1) Closing the Door
Closing your door, if you have one, is a great effective working practice.
By ensuring that anyone who sees your door closed knows that you are in ‘do not disturb’ mode, there are no misunderstandings, except perhaps, the first couple of times you need to tell someone. And make it only a couple of times – no more.
You see that your people need to be trained and when you are changing your behaviors, there will always be a few teething troubles, so you have to be gentle and firm at the same time.
In fact this a very productive exercise in itself, because as you display new and much more effective working practices yourself, your people start to notice and, hey presto, start mimicking your change style. You don’t even need to make the point sometimes. It’s like magic!
2) Remove Distractions
It’s very easy to get clutter piled up on your desk or other places you might describe as your work area. Sometimes it’s worth taking the step to have a clearout before you start work.
By moving these ‘visual distractions’ out of sight, you will find it much easier to focus on a special task. It’s not a magic way of making things ‘disappear’. No, you still have to evolve a system to manage the pile of stuff you’ve hidden.
But you can declutter your brain for a short while to get something done and then get back to that pile at a different (better) time for you.
This activity (hiding stuff for a bit!), is a very freeing thing to do – give it a try – you will feel wonderful, for a while!
3) Position Your Computer
In reviewing visual distractions, it’s easy to have your computer monitor lined up in such a way as to interfere with your concentration, with other’s movements maybe catching your eye.
If that’s the case, position it such that there are less likely to be any interactions that cross into your viewing space. This will significantly add to your effective working practices.
Remember, you are not in control of a lot of things when you work for an organization – it’s just the way it is, working as an employee at whatever level you are at.
Making sure that you attend to what you do have control of, is a step to maintaining your own dignity, self-respect and control, as well as a very effective working practice in itself.