When we think about being more productive, we typically think about ways in which we can manage our time better. We only get a few hours every day to do the work allotted, so it seems logical to use that time wisely. However, energy management can be the real key to more productive days. If you can capitalize on your energy levels throughout the day, you can do your best work.
Why Energy Management Matters
Everyone has a unique “energy rhythm.” Some people are most energetic in the morning. Some people are afternoon people, and others are evening or night owls. However, we all try to adhere to a cookie-cutter schedule of when we should be productive. If you find yourself barely able to keep your eyes open at 2:00 pm, you’re not doing your best work at that time.
Unfortunately, many people who work full-time jobs can’t pick and choose the hours in which they work. What you can do, however, is tap into your natural rhythms and the ebb and flow of energy you feel throughout the day, and plan your work for maximum output.
“It’s hard to have advice that works for everyone. Factor in what you know about yourself. Always have a pad of paper and pen for notes. Summarize verbally what you heard you need to do and the timeframe that is expected. Always know what the end goal is, and how the success of this effort is measured. Track projects in separate notebooks if you have a few. Stay consistent on your daily and weekly plans. Color code to give yourself a visual of what is urgent, versus important,” says Alyssa Cenekofsky.
Tips And Tricks For Managing Your Energy Levels
If you leave work at the end of the day but can’t really remember what it is you got done, you probably wasted a lot of time trying to force yourself to work when your body and brain weren’t tuned in. The rules of your workplace will have some impact on how you can spend your time throughout the day, but you can use these tips to help get the most out of your body’s energy rhythms.
- Block work into 90-minute chunks of time: Humans tend to get sleepy every 90 minutes. Take advantage of these ultradian rhythms that define natural productivity. Break your day into 90-minute blocks. Set a timer, and for those 90 minutes, only get up if you have to use the restroom. Focus intently on your task(s) at hand for that full time frame.
- Take 15-minute breaks in between: After 90 minutes are up, stand up and walk around. Fill your water bottle, use the restroom, stop and see your boss, etc. Reward yourself for 90 minutes of focus by letting your brain rest. If your workplace dictates when you can take breaks, stop what you are working on and shift gears, instead. Use that 15 minutes to check your email, sort through paperwork, etc.
- Track Your Day and Successes: Make notes every 30 minutes of your focus and accomplishments. Look for patterns that highlight your most productive times, and consider managing yourself to that energy and peak levels of production.
- Managing Distractions: Find some power statements that communicate to those around you that your focused on maximizing your efforts right now, giving the strong message of do not disturb. Consider blocking time out on your calendar for planning and follow up so you can maximize your efforts!
- Snack wisely: When you’re tired and hungry, it’s easy to reach for a candy bar from the vending machine. Instead, pack healthy snacks for the week in single-serve portions. Nuts are a great snack, as they are packed with protein, a natural source of energy.
- Take a walk at lunch: Even if you don’t work in an area that is conducive to walking, you can do laps around the outside of the building or the parking lot. Get up, get out and get the blood flowing. Take a friend with you or listen to music, books on tape or podcasts. The fresh air, movement and “me time” will help you face the afternoon feeling recharged.
Developing productive call center and administrative teams begins with hiring the right people. If you are looking to attract the best and brightest call center and administrative staff in your market, reach out to the recruiters at CSS today.