How to Maximize Your Personal Productivity

TSP • @myTSPnet


As we near about a year since the national shutdowns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies are still working from home and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, not all employees have adjusted to this change of pace the same.

Some have taken well to the shift in their work lifestyle, finding their time at home to be more beneficial for their schedule and personal lives. These individuals have found an abundance of productivity while completing tasks and submitting assignments, thriving on the freedom that comes with working from home.

Others have struggled to maintain consistency and draw the line for the necessary work-life balance. These individuals have found more difficulty in this adjustment and struggle to find a daily schedule to suit their needs. No matter which side of the fence you fall, this change presents multiple positive opportunities to increase your productivity.

This remote work style has increased flexibility when it comes to the traditional 9-5 schedule. Working outside of uniform hours gives everyone a chance to work when they feel most alert and inspired. The downfall of this freedom is the many distractions that take place on a typical day. A package arrives at the door, the dog barks, your Wi-Fi is spotty and the muffled chatter of family or roommates serves as consistent background noise.

We all experience normal peaks and valleys that translate to our most and least productive hours of the day. It’s vital to recognize patterns from an individual and employer perspective to increase and maintain daily productivity. 

With your employees no longer ten feet away from your desk, it’s critical to remain in the know when it comes to their work habits. Many organizations utilize applications that provide a level of business intelligence in individual and team productivity, like ActivTrack’s Data Connect.

This user activity data provides a Focus Score that gauges when users are least distracted during the day. With this application and others alike, employers are able to access productivity trends by specific users or roles. Additionally, employers are able to compare patterns by teams, office locations and remote employees to brainstorm ideas for optimizing company resources.

Managers can uncover key metrics and measure progress with quantitative data. This allows organizations to celebrate productivity and identify areas of improvement. While everyone in the workplace is different, it is vital to encourage employees through their work. Motivation from employers resonates strongly in working professionals, with 70% of employees stating that motivation and morale drastically improves with recognition from managers.

Setting achievable goals for your team and individual employees is another component in producing good work. Creating a plan, prioritizing tasks and knowing your “why” are manageable steps to take towards reaching your goals. Communicating expectations will result in increased confidence and higher performance.

Self-awareness is the key to success when your traditional 9-5 schedule becomes scattered. Your contact with coworkers has gone from walking to their office for a quick question to instant messaging, constant emails and the infamous Zoom calls. The typical business environment in which you may thrive and find comfort in is not an option.

Create a space in your home dedicated to work and try to utilize the hours you know your mind will be engaged and alert. Notice day-to-day patterns and make note of your peak performance hours. When you hit a creative block or feel like your brain is fried, step away and distract yourself for a set amount of time. When that time is up and you feel attentive to your work, step back into your assignments and push through your power hours.

The insights discovered by data and analytics can be shared by your employer to track individual progress. Learning your patterns can be helpful in determining your daily schedule and ideal work hours. While reviewing analytics isn’t a requirement, data can be helpful for employees who struggle to find consistency in their schedule.

While consistent productivity is important, everyone needs a moment to step back and reset. Productivity valleys aren’t always negative. As normal human beings, this is a natural response for our bodies to remind us that we need a break. Take notice of when your body is alerting you to stop to avoid potential burnout in the long run. Being aware of temporary lapses and knowing when our individuals power hours come alive will make for a more productive and pleasant workday.