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6 Personal Productivity Hacks to Improve Project Management

Businesses, both large and small, undoubtedly juggle numerous tasks, projects, plans and people. With the help of project management tools and resource management apps, businesses are better able to collaborate on projects, delegate tasks, track projects and stay on schedule. While the benefits of project management software are boundless, there are personal productivity hacks that can increase productivity even more.

1. Switch Off Your Notifications

Every day, we have countless items competing for our time and attention. Unless you’re in the customer service industry, notifications can harm your productivity. More often than not, we give into interruptions, which makes us respond to messages that may not directly involve work. When you’re constantly bombarded by notifications, it’s hard to focus on work.

Contrary to popular belief, the human brain cannot multitask. We’re simply able to switch from one task to another. Therefore, every time you’re distracted by a notification, it takes precious time and energy to switch tasks. It can be difficult to change your behavior but turning off your notifications will instantly make you more productive.

2. Schedule Reading & Writing of Emails

According to renowned management consulting firm Mckinsey and Company, the average office worker spends more than a quarter of their day reading and answering emails. In fact, most people feel like email is taking over their life. Well, there are several ways you can prevent email from ruining your productivity.

One of the best ways to deal with the stress that can come with using email is to avoid reacting to new emails throughout the day. Instead create a schedule with specific times for reading, writing, reviewing and responding to emails. For instance, if you’re more productive in the morning, you can schedule time for emails in the afternoon, say, when you start to lose focus and wouldn’t lose most of your productive time.

3. Avoid Unnecessary Meetings

Unless there’s a clear agenda and set goal, most meetings are rarely necessary. Meetings can take up a significant amount of time, which leaves precious little time to actually get work done. Traditional meetings kill our sense of urgency and create an unnecessary culture of compromise.

If you need to hold a meeting, it should always produce a committed action plan. Other suggestions include reducing the length of meetings to a maximum of one hour and always starting meetings on time, regardless of people who are late. The secret to making a meeting successful is to ensure it is efficient, effective and worth attending.

4. Prioritize Tasks

One of the biggest challenges we face each day is accurately prioritizing the work that matters the most. Oftentimes, every task we have to do seems like a priority, which makes it difficult to figure out where to begin. The only way out is to plan how to tackle tasks in a sensible order.

Think about how much time you need to perform each task and rank them in order of time needed for completion. An efficient way to go about it is to handle anything that takes less than a few minutes right away so you can focus on other tasks. Next, you can tackle the most important or dreaded tasks and finally prioritize the rest depending on the importance of deadlines.

5. Personalized Productivity Tools

Thanks to current technology! There are plenty of productivity tools that allow us to do amazing things. So how do you find the best productivity tool for you? That depends on what you want to achieve. Some tools are general while others are more specific. Think about the role personal productivity plays in your life and choose a tool that will add value to your time. For instance, if it’s hard for you to maintain specific habits, look for tools that help you stay on track.

6. Set Realistic Goals

Goal setting is a key tool to increase personal productivity but there is more to it than just setting goals. You need to set goals that pose a challenge but are also achievable. Your goals need to be clear and specific. Specific goals can help you make sound decisions and allocate your time well. There’s no harm in starting small as you work your way to larger goals. Moreover, your personal productivity improves if you’re able to work together with others as a team.