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12 Real Reasons Some People Never Seem to Have Enough Time

12 Real Reasons Some People Never Seem to Have Enough Time

Many people today complain that they constantly don’t have enough time. They are so busy that they don’t have time for their families, work tasks, kids, friends, etc. At the same time, there are lots of people who have the same number of responsibilities or even more, but they manage to do everything in time and still find a couple of hours to relax and do what they like. People who always lack time are probably do something wrong. Here’s why.

1. They don’t sleep right

Sleeping is one of the most important things for a healthy and successful life. If your sleeping hours are chaotic and irregular, you probably find yourself not having enough time for some things during the day. Scheduling your sleep can be the perfect solution here. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day and you may see the difference soon.  The earlier you wake up, the more time you have before work to get ready, eat and spend some time on yourself.

2. They don’t say “no”

People who agree to help everyone don’t usually have much time left for themselves. If someone asks you for a favor, think if you have time for this and whether it will be good for you. I’m not saying you should turn everyone down and be selfish. However, your personal goals, plans, and desires should be a priority.

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3. They don’t work out

Many people don’t work out because they think they don’t have time for that. However, it is proven that physical activities make our brains work faster and better. Thus, after a good workout, you will be able to finish your tasks much quicker and maybe even better. Plus, you’ll be in good shape.

4. They don’t make to-do-lists

Planning is the key to success. If your days are not organized, you lose a lot of time on deciding what to do next, choosing which task to start with, procrastinating, etc. Make a to-do-list every day and before going to sleep, check if you managed to do everything. If you can, plan your day by hours. Then you won’t forget anything; you’ll do everything in time and procrastinate less.

5. They don’t eat right

Healthy eating can actually help you with the lack of time. If you eat on schedule and the products are healthy yet nutritious, you won’t spend time on numerous snacks between meals and your body won’t spend too much energy on digesting difficult food. So you will be more energized and productive.

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6. They don’t get themselves in the right mood

Tons of researches have proved that optimists do better at work, tests, contests, etc. If you don’t put yourself in the right mood, you’ll procrastinate more and do less with your time. Try to start your working day calm and focus on the important tasks. You can use pleasant morning habits to improve your spirit such as drinking your favorite coffee or listening to positive music.

7. They don’t eliminate distractions

Have you ever noticed how much time you spend on social networks, reading news, chatting with colleagues, answering calls, helping new colleagues understand the work, etc. Distractions are what stop you from getting things done fast and right. If you were sitting in a closed room with nothing but your task, you’d probably deal with it quite quickly. But you cannot create such a room, so create a system. Choose at least two hours per day when you cannot be disturbed at all. Turn off your phone, close all the entertainment sites, put on your headphones and ask your colleagues not to disturb you. You will do more in these two hours than you do in a day with all those distractions.

8. They don’t have specific goals

If you don’t know where you are going to, you make a lot of detours and stops. Having a clear goal in your head can help you move faster towards it. The important thing is not to make this goal too abstract. Instead of having a goal of becoming rich, have a goal to finish your big project by the end of the year. A good idea is to have smaller goals along with that big one, such as to lose a couple of pounds by the end of the month or to start riding a bike to work instead of a car. Start small, but think big.

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9. They take too many tasks

Multitasking can be great sometimes. But if you have many tasks and you want to do all of them right, don’t try to do them all at once. You’ll miss something, you’ll make mistakes, and you won’t do the best you can and as a result, you will have to correct mistakes and redo some things. That will take much more time than you can spend doing everything right from the first try. Take 1-2 tasks at a time and do your best with them.

10. They check their e-mails way too often

If you’re waiting for a very important letter and check your e-mail every hour, it is one thing. However, doing it first thing in the morning is definitely not right. It distracts you from your plans, goals and intentions. Don’t check your personal e-mails more than three times a day and definitely try not to do it for at least a couple of hours after you wake up.

11. They are not organized

Good preparations and planning is the key to saving time. Some people spend too much time in the morning getting ready, cooking breakfast, and collecting their things. However, you can do half of those things in the evening and save yourself a lot of time. You can decide what you’ll wear and iron some clothes; you can put all the things you’ll need in your bag, you can pre-cook an easy meal for the morning, etc.

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12. They don’t use their free time productively

All of us have some things that we love to do no matter if they don’t bring us much use. This time can still be used with some benefit. If you cannot but watch a TV show in the evening, do some exercising while watching it; thus, you can skip the gym and do what you really want to do not wasting time. If you love drawing, for example, turn on some educational podcasts or foreign language audio-courses; even if you don’t listen to that very attentively, you still hear and learn something. Try to combine such things and you’ll have some more time.

Featured photo credit: Time flies/Hartwig HKD via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 6, 2021

14 Ideas on How to Measure Productivity to Make Progress

14 Ideas on How to Measure Productivity to Make Progress

Everyone has heard the term productivity, and people talk about it in terms of how high it is and how to improve it. But fewer know how to measure productivity, or even what exactly we are talking about when using the term “productivity.”

In its simplest form, the productivity formula looks like this: Output ÷ Input = Productivity.

For example, you have two salespeople each making 10 calls to customers per week. The first one averages 2 sales per week and the second one averages 3 sales per week. By plugging in the numbers we get the following productivity levels for each sales person.

For salesperson one, the output is 2 sales and the input is 10 sales: 2 ÷ 10 = .2 or 20% productivity. For salesperson two, the output is 3 sales and the input is 10 sales: 3 ÷ 10 = .3 or 30% productivity.

Knowing how to measure and interpret productivity is an invaluable asset for any manager or business owner in today’s world. As an example, in the above scenario, salesperson #1 is clearly not doing as well as salesperson #2.

Knowing this information we can now better determine what course of action to take with salesperson #1.

Some possible outcomes might be to require more in-house training for that salesperson, or to have them accompany the more productive salesperson to learn a better technique. It might be that salesperson #1 just isn’t suited for sales and would do a better job in a different position.

How to Measure Productivity With Management Techniques

Knowing how to measure productivity allows you to fine tune your business by minimizing costs and maximizing profits:

1. Identify Long and Short-Term Goals

Having a good understanding of what you (or your company’s) goals are is key to measuring productivity.

For example, if your company’s goal is to maximize market share, you’ll want to measure your team’s productivity by their ability to acquire new customers, not necessarily on actual sales made.

2. Break Down Goals Into Smaller Weekly Objectives

Your long-term goal might be to get 1,000 new customers in a year. That’s going to be 20 new customers per week. If you have 5 people on your team, then each one needs to bring in 4 new customers per week.

Now that you’ve broken it down, you can track each person’s productivity week-by-week just by plugging in the numbers:

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Productivity = number of new customers ÷ number of sales calls made

3. Create a System

Have you ever noticed that whenever you walk into a McDonald’s, the French fry machine is always to your left? 

This is because McDonald’s created a system. They have determined that the most efficient way to set up a kitchen is to always have the French fry machine on the left when you walk in.

You can do the same thing and just adapt it to your business.

Let’s say that you know that your most productive salespeople are making the most sales between the hours of 3 and 7 pm. If the other salespeople are working from 9 am to 4 pm, you can potentially increase productivity through something as simple as adjusting the workday.

Knowing how to measure productivity allows you to set up, monitor, and fine tune systems to maximize output.

4. Evaluate, Evaluate, Evaluate!

We’ve already touched on using these productivity numbers to evaluate and monitor your employees, but don’t forget to evaluate yourself using these same measurements.

If you have set up a system to track and measure employees’ performance, but you’re still not meeting goals, it may be time to look at your management style. After all, your management is a big part of the input side of our equation.

Are you more of a carrot or a stick type of manager? Maybe you can try being more of the opposite type to see if that changes productivity. Are you managing your employees as a group? Perhaps taking a more one-on-one approach would be a better way to utilize each individual’s strengths and weaknesses.

Just remember that you and your management style contribute directly to your employees’ productivity.

5. Use a Ratings Scale

Having clear and concise objectives for individual employees is a crucial part of any attempt to increase workplace productivity. Once you have set the goals or objectives, it’s important that your employees are given regular feedback regarding their progress.

Using a ratings scale is a good way to provide a standardized visual representation of progress. Using a scale of 1-5 or 1-10 is a good way to give clear and concise feedback on an individual basis.

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It’s also a good way to track long-term progress and growth in areas that need improvement.

6. Hire “Mystery Shoppers”

This is especially helpful in retail operations where customer service is critical. A mystery shopper can give feedback based on what a typical customer is likely to experience.

You can hire your own shopper, or there are firms that will provide them for you. No matter which route you choose, it’s important that the mystery shoppers have a standardized checklist for their evaluation.

You can request evaluations for your employees friendliness, how long it took to greet the shopper, employees’ knowledge of the products or services, and just about anything else that’s important to a retail operation.

7. Offer Feedback Forms

Using a feedback form is a great way to get direct input from existing customers. There are just a couple of things to keep in mind when using feedback forms.

First, keep the form short, 2-3 questions max with a space for any additional comments. Asking people to fill out a long form with lots of questions will significantly reduce the amount of information you receive.

Secondly, be aware that customers are much more likely to submit feedback forms when they are unhappy or have a complaint than when they are satisfied.

You can offset this tendency by asking everyone to take the survey at the end of their interaction. This will increase compliance and give you a broader range of customer experiences, which will help as you’re learning how to measure productivity.

8. Track Cost Effectiveness

This is a great metric to have, especially if your employees have some discretion over their budgets. You can track how much each person spends and how they spend it against their productivity.

Again, this one is easy to plug into the equation: Productivity = amount of money brought in ÷ amount of money spent.

Having this information is very useful in forecasting expenses and estimating budgets.

9. Use Self-Evaluations

Asking your staff to do self evaluations can be a win-win for everyone. Studies have shown that when employees feel that they are involved and their input is taken seriously, morale improves. And as we all know, high employee morale translates into higher productivity.

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Using self-evaluations is also a good way to make sure that the employees and employers goals are in alignment.

10. Monitor Time Management

This is the number one killer of productivity in the workplace. Time spent browsing the internet, playing games, checking email, and making personal calls all contribute to lower productivity[1].

Time Management Tips to Improve Productivity

    The trick is to limit these activities without becoming overbearing and affecting morale. Studies have shown that most people will adhere to rules that they feel are fair and applied to everyone equally.

    While ideally, we may think that none of these activities should be done on company time, employees will almost certainly have a different opinion. From a productivity standpoint, it is best to have policies and rules that are seen as fair to both sides as you’re learning how to measure productivity.

    11. Analyze New Customer Acquisition

    We’ve all heard the phrase that “It’s more expensive to get a new customer than it is to keep an existing one.” And while that is very true, in order for your business to keep growing, you will need to continually add new customers.

    Knowing how to measure productivity via new customer acquisition will make sure that your marketing dollars are being spent in the most efficient way possible. This is another metric that’s easy to plug into the formula: Productivity = number of new customers ÷ amount of money spent to acquire those customers.

    For example, if you run any kind of advertising campaign, you can compare results and base your future spending accordingly.

    Let’s say that your total advertising budget is $3,000. You put $2,000 into television ads, $700 into radio ads, and $300 into print ads. When you track the results, you find that your television ad produced 50 new customers, your radio ad produced 15 new customers, and your print ad produced 9 new customers.

    Let’s plug those numbers into our equation. Television produced 50 new customers at a cost of $2,000 (50 ÷ 2000 = .025, or a productivity rate of 2.5%). The radio ads produced 15 new customers and cost $700 (15 ÷ 700 = .022, or a 2.2% productivity rate). Print ads brought in 9 new customers and cost $300 (9 ÷ 300 = .03, or a 3% return on productivity).

    From this analysis, it is clear that you would be getting the biggest bang for your advertising dollar using print ads.

    12. Utilize Peer Feedback

    This is especially useful when people who work in teams or groups. While self-assessments can be very useful, the average person is notoriously bad at assessing their own abilities.

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    Just ask a room full of people how many consider themselves to be an above average driver and you’ll see 70% of the hands go up[2]! Now we clearly know that in reality about 25% of drivers are below average, 25% are above average, and 50% are average.

    Are all these people lying? No, they just don’t have an accurate assessment of their own abilities.

    It’s the same in the workplace. Using peer feedback will often provide a more accurate assessment of a person’s ability than a self-assessment would.

    13. Encourage Innovation and Don’t Penalize Failure

    When it comes to productivity, encouraging employee input and adopting their ideas can be a great way to boost productivity. Just make sure that any changes you adopt translate into higher productivity.

    Let’s say that someone comes to you requesting an entertainment budget so that they can take potential customers golfing or out to dinner. By utilizing simple productivity metrics, you can easily produce a cost benefit analysis and either expand the program to the rest of the sales team, or terminate it completely.

    Either way, you have gained valuable knowledge and boosted morale by including employees in the decision-making process.

    14. Use an External Evaluator

    Using an external evaluator is the pinnacle of objective evaluations. Firms that provide professional evaluations use highly trained personnel that even specialize in specific industries.

    They will design a complete analysis of your business’ productivity level. In their final report, they will offer suggestions and recommendations on how to improve productivity.

    While the benefits of a professional evaluation are many, their costs make them prohibitive for most businesses.

    Final Thoughts

    These are just a few of the things you can do when learning how to measure productivity. Some may work for your particular situation, and some may not.

    The most important thing to remember when deciding how to track productivity is to choose a method consistent with your goals. Once you’ve decided on that, it’s just a matter of continuously monitoring your progress, making minor adjustments, and analyzing the results of those adjustments.

    The business world is changing fast, and having the right tools to track and monitor your productivity can give you the edge over your competition.

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    Featured photo credit: William Iven via unsplash.com

    Reference

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