Do productive people behave differently?

Some people have a natural flair for task management and organisation. Others had the good luck of starting their careers in organisations where supportive bosses showed them how to become more productive. Regardless, how you started your personal productivity journey, it is interesting to know that while productive people come from all walks of life and have different personalities, they all tend to have behaviours that make them more productive than others. Productive people tend to:

Batch related tasks

A baker does not prepare dough and bake bread one at a time. Rather, they prepare a batch and put them in the oven at the same time. This not only saves the baker time but allows them to focus on just one type of task at a time. The baker doesn’t try to bake croissants and bread at the same time. They know each confectionary requires different treatment. Productive people treat their tasks in the same way. They make time to check their emails twice or thrice a day so they can reply to all inbox items that require a response at once. This is a more effective way of handling emails than responding to each item as you receive it.

Reply to a batch of emails

Change their environment

A lot of the things we do are products of habit. You don’t consciously think about the first cup of tea you drink in the day nor the urge to check your messages once you hear a beep. Our habits are the products of our environment and by altering the environment, we can nudge our habits in the direction we want. If you put your phone on the bedside table before going to bed, it will be the first thing you reach for when you wake up. If the social media icons are on your homescreen, they are the first things you will check as soon as you unlock the screen. If you would like to change that, consider leaving a book by the bedside or absolutely nothing if you’d like to get up as soon as you hear the alarm.

Your environment determines what you do

Improve written communication skills

A greater part of knowledge communication is handled through emails and short messages. Productive people improve their written communication skills because they understand time and effort is wasted when people have to keep asking for clarification on assigned tasks. Spend some time to master the basics of writing more effectively. It not only saves you time but makes a difference in how you are perceived by your colleagues. Project team members who communicate clearly and effectively are a treasured resource.

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