How often do you find your mind drifting when you’re at work?
Category Archives: Productivity
The Google campus in Mountain View, California, has the perfect solution to that well known energy slump which many of us experience in the afternoon, usually right around 2:30pm. It’s called a nap pod! When the innovation gets too much, employees are encouraged to take themselves off for a five to 15 minute power nap, to help recharge their batteries.
Wouldn’t it be lovely to have more free time?
Simon Phillips, The Change Man has been helping managers in all sectors to regain control over their lives and 22 days is the average amount of time they have regained through implementing his strategies (by their own measure).
Did you know that the brain consumes roughly 20% of our daily calories and it requires a regular supply of glucose to help us concentrate, remember and learn?
Mental activities will use up a brain’s supply of glucose – meaning the foods we munch on whilst working are crucial to maintaining these glucose levels and thus our thinking power and levels of productivity.
If you’re in an open-plan office, then you might listen to music in a bid to drown out the conversations that are surrounding you.
Gossip and general chit-chat about the most random things that you wouldn’t normally talk about (but for some reason in the office seem like the most interesting topics ever), are great from time-to-time, but some days you just need to get your head down and finish that task you were supposed to complete yesterday.
By 2025, it’s predicted that Gen Y will make up 75% of the workforce.
This reality is enough to fill many managers with fear and trepidation. Perhaps this is no surprise, with all the hype that surrounds Gen Y in the workforce: from self-centered and entitled to optimists with a genuine desire to help others, this generation has been branded with a staggering number of stereotypes.
Futurologists are forever trying to anticipate how today’s technologies will shape tomorrow’s working practices. Granted, we’re not at the point where our jobs have been taken over by robots with artificial intelligence, allowing us to enjoy a life of leisure, but communications platforms do allow us to interact and connect in ways we never thought possible. However, for many, the communications revolution hasn’t yet materialised into utopia.
I have to admit – I’m one of those workers who you’ll find tucking into a cheese and pickle sandwich at my desk at lunchtime. It’s a chance to have five minutes to myself and a cheeky peek at BuzzFeed before I crack on with my work. Not a great habit I know.
It’s tempting, I have to admit! A life without email would undoubtedly make a huge difference to my productivity. Throughout my career, the roles and positions I’ve held have always been heavily reliant on email, and although it’s been essential for communications, in many ways, it has also been a big distraction. Despite best efforts to restrict email related tasks to particular times of day, the reality is that people often expect faster response times. When an important email comes through which needs urgent attention, it can be tricky to ignore. But this can really disrupt the creative process and work flow.
Meetings. They are a necessary part of business life. Sometimes they are wonderful – productive and even enjoyable. But we’ve probably all sat through other types of meetings – the ones that are unproductive, tiresome and agonisingly long. Unfortunately, we all need meetings. We need them for updating people, brainstorming options, exploring and agreeing decisions. We need them with individuals to update each other, to mentor or coach, to chew over a problem, or to support people with their personal development.
When a company values its employees and the staff are engaged and motivated, it creates a pretty special working environment that people want to be a part of.
The benefits of a motivated workforce are substantial and include increased productivity, better collaboration with colleagues, a higher quality of service to customers and lower levels of absenteeism and staff turnover.
Ever sat down at your desk following a long, complicated meeting and looked at either a messy, incomprehensible scrawl of notes or a worryingly blank page where today’s meeting notes should have been? Fear not – many of us struggle for ways to take accurate notes in meetings that both enable us to follow up on our actions afterwards and make sure we and our team are up to speed before the next meeting. So what are some ways we can make sure our note-taking skills get better?
There is only one place to begin a round-up of the coolest offices in the world: Google’s corporate headquarters in Mountain View, California. People find Google’s HQ so comfortable, that a number of employees decided to make the ‘Googleplex’ campus their permanent address for more than a year. With perks like free meals, nap chairs, haircuts and a laundrette, it’s easy to see why they thought they’d save on rent and other personal costs for a while.
Brainstorming was invented in 1941 by New York advertising executive Alex Osbourne, who found that conventional business meetings were inhibiting the creation of new ideas. He proposed a set of rules that he believed would give people the freedom to think creatively and bypass any inhibitions or tensions. They were:
If you have a weakness for gadgets, you might want to look away now!
We’ve compiled our roundup of some of the most fun and quirky office gadgets to brighten up your workspace in 2015. While some may not be essential business tools, we think they may help to make the time you spend in the office each day more enjoyable and even help reduce your stress.
Most of the country has been issued with a snow warning in anticipation of the arrival of the “Beast from the East” – a stretch of cold air heading our way from Siberia. How lovely.
Back in 2013, 77% of organisations were affected by severe weather. Yet despite it being acknowledged as one of the biggest threats to UK businesses, few are often prepared for the disruption it causes.
The theme for this week’s round-up is creativity. In the colder winter months it’s more important than ever to get your team galvanised and the opportunity to think creatively might be just the thing. We’ve compiled some great tips and suggestions from across the web to get your business thinking more creatively.
What’s more fun than a weekly meeting? Pretty much anything. Each week, you and your co-workers go down the same list of initiatives, in that same dry tone. Perhaps it’s just inevitable that weekly meetings become predictable, repetitive and sleep-inducing. Seriously, if you suffer from insomnia, just attend one bad weekly meeting and you’ll be cured.
Living in the digital age is a double-edged sword: The tools available to us can be wonderful servants, but they can also be terrible masters.
An avalanche of emails, texts and social media alerts threaten productivity in ways unimaginable only a few years ago. The challenge for us, then, is to use this technology to boost our productivity while still fending off distractions.
Many of us like to make New Year’s resolutions, such as keeping on top of our ‘to do’ lists, but very often they fall by the wayside when our old habits begin to creep back in. How lovely would it be if we could rewire our brains to a new, productive and efficient way of working, so that we can truly take control over the way we work, rather than letting our work take control of us?
Are you thinking about your New Year’s Resolutions yet? This week’s round-up might be a good place to start; here are some recent stories about good and bad workplace habits to adopt to help make your day more productive and your work mindset better.
We’re getting closer to finding out who will be named this year’s winner of the prestigious partnership with Lord Sugar himself, and we think this might just have been the best season of The Apprentice yet. There’ve been the usual personality clashes, the hilarious soundbites and the fist-bitingly awful gaffes, but that’s precisely what makes the programme such an addictive watch.
For many of us, the humble desk is where we spend the majority of our days. So isn’t it time we made it a happier place to spend our time?
We’ve conducted a little research to help you make your little corner of the office (home or otherwise) a more pleasant place to be, and think that the perfect desk comprises the following things:
“Meetings are a great way to fill my working day,” said nobody, ever.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s a quick catch-up with a colleague or a regular team get-together – a meeting should serve a purpose and have at least a bare minimum agenda (and no, three bullets two minutes before the meeting do not qualify as an agenda). Otherwise the meeting is really just a waste of time that could be better spent getting on with “real” work, or even doing non work-related stuff.
What mode of transport do you use to get to work? And while you’re en-route, do you use the time to catch up on emails, plan how you’ll tackle your to-do list, or even make a start on the day’s tasks? Chances are that, for most of you, the facilities on your daily commute aren’t fit for any of those tasks.
When was the last time you did something different at lunch?
Instead of sitting at your desk and working through yet another lunch hour, why not try and break a world record? Apparently it’s possible. Check out this infographic from the team over at Chair Office and try spicing up your lunch break with a few record breaking attempts (and if you’re successful, please let us know!).