If you have ever had a job working in an office, then you have probably heard plenty about productivity. Many bosses take great care about finding out how productive potential employees will be when looking to hire new staff, and productivity is often a big part of performance evaluations.
Productivity is simply a big part of having a job; however, productivity should extend outside the office. After all, going the extra mile is what separates the good employees and the excellent employees. But it can be difficult to be productive outside the office if you do not know how.
Separate Your Work and Social Life
One big part of being productive outside the office is separating your work and social life. One good way to help keep these two sides separate is to get a second phone line. This does not mean you need to carry two phones, since the SmartPhone app Line2 can work as a second phone line on a SmartPhone for business calls. Separating your phone lines can help you to seem more professional and productive.
To further keep your work and social lives separated, avoid making many friendships that might interfere with your work. It is fine to have a colleague or two that you get a drink with after work sometimes, but it might be a problem if you find yourself invited to your employee’s daughter’s birthday party.
This is a matter of common sense and personal judgment, since all business relationships are different, but it’s generally not a good idea for business associates on different levels of “the food chain” to get too close. This not only can cause people to become suspicious if you or your friend gets a raise or paid vacation, but it can also lower your productivity dealing with the issues that can arise.
Working From Home
Another situation that can give people trouble is when they have to work from home or a hotel, such as finishing and sending in a report while on a business trip. It can be distracting and demotivating if you do not have to get ready or dressed to go into work, so many people find themselves becoming less productive in these situations.
The best thing to do is pretend you are at work. When you wake up, take a shower and get dressed. This gets you in a working mindset. Set a strict schedule and follow it, and avoid all distractions such as television and friends. Also, make a list of things to do every night for the next day. This will help you keep track of exactly what you need to do.
If there is one thing that impresses employers and future employers, it is an individual’s ability to be productive outside the office. It is often the deciding factor when an employer is deciding between applicants for an open position or when deciding who they need to lay off. Increasing your productivity outside the office is a great way to put yourself ahead of the competition.
Tom Chu is SEO manager at PsPrint, an online printing company specializing in brochure and poster printing among other popular services. Follow PsPrint on Twitter as @PsPrint.
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