Here’s a look at three interesting stories currently in the news with ramifications for your team’s productivity.
1. Default to no when you’re feeling overwhelmed
In order to say yes to the things that matter most to you, you should default to saying no to things that don’t move your goals forward or add happiness to your life, writes Adrian Granzella Larssen at the Daily Muse. That’s easier said than done, of course, as anyone who’s ever tried to regain control over an overflowing schedule knows. She recommends specific questions to ask yourself to help cut the fat from your calendar (like “what doesn’t need to happen by me?” and “what’s on here only because I think I should do it, not because it’s necessary or I want to?”). She also suggests making yourself cancel, delegate, or move at least one thing and reallocate that time to a more important priority, and offers specific wording to use in turning down invitations and meeting requests. Her wording suggestions are particularly helpful if you struggle with how to politely get yourself out of events without harming your relationships with colleagues.
2. How to be more productive at work when you’re sleep-deprived
Whether it’s from insomnia, a new baby, or a late night of Pokemon Go, you’ve probably had days where you arrived at work already exhausted from not getting enough sleep the night before. Sara McCord, writing in Inc., says that you can still salvage your productivity for the day by following a four-step plan, which includes proofreading everything (even things you normally wouldn't need to proofread, like casual emails), only writing things you’d make public (this is not the day to forward an email with a snarky comment, because your sleep deprivation means that you’re certain to send it to the wrong person), giving yourself more time than usual to process and respond to new ideas (because your brain is probably not at its best), and saving the toughest tasks for when you’re better rested.
3. Standing desks aren’t a productivity magic bullet
A recent well-publicized study showing that employees who used sit-stand desks were 46% more productive than those at traditional desks “was far from a slam dunk,” reports Fast Company, noting that it had methodological weaknesses and findings that likely aren’t broadly applicable to knowledge workers. In fact, a recent review of studies from this year found sit-stand desks had no significant impact on performance. That’s not to say that they don’t come with other benefits, of course (such as health and morale) – productivity just may not be one of them.