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10 things you can do to be more productive at work

·Finance and policy reporter
Working longer hours does not make people more productive. Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/PA Images
Working longer hours does not make people more productive. Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/PA Images

A new survey of almost 20,000 people across the world shines a light on what makes workers productive.

The survey was conducted by two MIT researchers and published in the Harvard Business Review. Their findings suggest working longer hours does not make people more productive.

The authors said age and seniority are significantly linked to productivity, with older and higher-ranking staff more likely to be the most productive.

READ MORE: Women are better than men at running meetings, study claims

Here are some of their tips for how to improve your productivity at work:

  1. Revise your daily schedule the day before, deciding on your priorities and writing down an objective for every appointment on your calendar.

  2. Limit meeting times to 90 minutes at the very longest, keeping them short where possible.

  3. End every meeting by clearly outlining the next steps, and who is responsible.

  4. Make sure daily activities like getting dressed are clear routines, so you don’t have to spend time thinking about them.

  5. Leave time in your daily schedule for unexpected events and emergencies.

  6. Only check screens for messages once an hour if possible, rather than every few minutes.

  7. Delegate tasks to others where possible where they do not “further your top priorities.”

  8. Come up with processes to avoid future mistakes to improve performance rather than “playing the blame game.”

  9. Send out a detailed agenda to everyone involved in a meeting to keep people focused.

  10. Break up big projects into pieces and then reward yourself for completing them.


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