Our latest article looks at how you can work more efficiently and offers some tips to get you started…
Plan ahead and prioritise
Workplaces can be overwhelming. Lots of noise, lots of people wanting your time, lots to do before the end of the day. Planning out how you’re going to use your time can really help you to focus and work to the best of your ability. Why not start your day by looking at what tasks you need to complete and then work out the best way – and best order – in which to approach them? Using lists, tools or techniques can make this process a breeze and not only will a plan allow you to prioritise effectively, but it can also reduce any anxiety that might spring up when you’re trying to juggle lots of jobs at once.
Use a calendar
A calendar is your best friend when it comes to planning your workload and working efficiently. Make a note of any meetings and important deadlines to ensure you never miss anything. Blocking out time for any tasks you’ve been given will also allow you to see, at a glance, where you have some free time to help someone else and where you might need some support yourself.
If you’re using an email system like Microsoft Outlook then you’ll have a built-in calendar just waiting to be filled. Such programmes also have a whole host of other features to help you work efficiently, so make sure you check them out.
Use apps smartly
We’ve already talked about apps that can help make your workday more effective, but it’s one thing to identify them and another to actually use them on a daily basis. Take the time to build apps into your working life and this small initial investment could have a big impact further down the line.
Get a full brief
No matter where you’re working, you’ll probably be given tasks to do by other people. If they tell you everything you need to know, that’s great. But if they don’t then don’t be afraid to ask questions. Making sure that you understand what’s expected of you will help to reduce the amount of time you spend going back and forth, trying to pin those details down. Not only does this boost your own efficiency, but it boosts your colleagues’ too!
Take time to reflect
Self-reflection and self-assessment are an important part of working life. Taking a moment to reflect on your progress at the end of each working day – or working week, if that’s more suitable – will enable you to identify what went well, what didn’t and where you can improve going forward. The natural knock-on effect of this process will be improved productivity and efficiency, so it’s definitely worth investing your time in.
While it’s important to ask for help when you need it, there will also be times when your own initiative could be the answer. If you’re not sure how to do something, why not spend a few minutes trying to work it out? The internet is a fantastic source of information, tips and guidance, and you’ll often discover that someone else has experienced the same issue as you – and found a solution for you to try. Solving a problem like this yourself can be really satisfying and also give you extra skills and knowledge that will come in handy in the future.
Looking for some more tips or tricks to help you succeed in the workplace? Check out 5 tips for a new apprentice or trainee and how to make a good first impression… within the first two weeks[JH1] .
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- Publication date
- 14 December 2017
- European Labour Authority | Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion
- Hints and tipsYouth
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