October 10, 2013

What You Need to Know About Work Environment

Work Environment Matters. I have it on good authority. So let me fill you in on what you absolutely positively must need to know. Are you ready for some rapid-fire knowledge? Here it goes…

Work Environment 101

  • Wherever you end up, get in a good chair. If you spend your day slumped on a couch, you’re not going to get much done. I’ve been there, and I speak the truth.
  • You’ll do your best work in a professional environment. Working at home is awesome, and sometimes (when you have very clearly defined tasks, or your office is under construction) it serves a great purpose. But most of the time, putting yourself in a physical office with colleagues will help you get more out of yourself. It requires a little more discipline but it goes a long way.
  • Fresh air and water need to be accessible. If your angry boss doesn’t let you run out for a coffee, or a walk around the block to stretch your legs, you’re probably being micro-managed in other annoying ways.
  • Light helps a lot. If you work in your own office, or share it with a few people, you know it can be tempting to go into work and leave the lights off until 11am. But you need to get serious here.. Comfort and productivity are often two different things. You’re at work to work, so work.
  • Time in the office does not equate to productivity. This goes without saying, but it’s so important I had to remind you. Focus on tasks and output. Don’t worry about face time. Try to emphasize this so it’s reflected in your work environment.
  • A casual attitude goes a long way. If you’re a creative professional in a formal office environment, don’t be afraid to dress casual and be comfortable (within reason). My best productivity occurs when I’m casually dressed in a formal setting. I’m not getting choked out by a tie, but I know I’m there to work. Make sense?
  • Don’t come too late or leave too early. Even if you do more than everyone else, your colleagues will probably start to resent you. Get a lot done. And use your extra time to help out others. That’s how you can foster a great environment and earn respect.
  • The key to getting more out of your day is focus. Your environment must allow you to focus. This might mean using brown noise and an egg timer to tune out the hustle and bustle around you. But you need time to put your head down. Talking about work and doing work are not the same thing.

How To Focus In Any Work Environment

  • Regardless of where you work, you should know the two most important things you need to get done each day. Do them before 11am, wherever possible. Put on an egg timer and push through.
  • Don’t ever set your egg timer for more than 75 minutes. Even better, go for 45 minute segments with 5-15 minute breaks. Look up the Pomodoro technique for more information on this approach.
  • An egg timer without a prioritized task list is a waste of time wherever you are. Create your task list for the next day each night before you go to bed.

So what do you think? Do you see how these tips can help you work better, and foster a productive environment? Great. And by the way…

If you care too much about your work environment, chances are work environment isn’t going to be the limiting factor for you. While a good environment can help you produce your best work, at the end of the day, it’s still called work for a reason. Now stop reading, and go get something done.

Final distraction: What are your productivity tips? Share your best one in the comments below. I’m always eager to hear your tips for getting more out of your day.

Filed under:  Business Producivity  ||  Tagged under:

Jeff Waite

As an optimization strategist, Jeff helps an array of business owners implement process-based growth initiatives, perfectly personalized to fit their offerings and industry.
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