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Last Updated on December 23, 2020

Best Gift Ideas For People Who Want To Boost Productivity

Best Gift Ideas For People Who Want To Boost Productivity

Christmas is upon us once again and for many, people are scrambling around to come up with gift ideas. But one of the most challenging people out there oddly enough is those individuals who value productivity over everything else. That or they want gifts that they can use in a practical sense.

As straightforward as those people are, sometimes finding the right gadgets or gifts can be difficult. We understand that and so we’ve put together a short guide on what to give to these individuals. For this guide, we’ve divided up the gifts into sections, suggesting possible gifts that boost productivity but are also for people who value a specific kind of productivity.

Whether these people want to be punctual, to those making the most out of their work, we think you’ll find a gift that they’ll enjoy below.

For People Who Want to Stay on Top of Their Schedule

Staying on top of one’s schedule is a top priority for any productive person, but there are many who lean further into this. Some believe that it comes to making the most of their time and having a very busy schedule. While a scheduler is alright as they have a better structure and control over their day, great productivity gifts for these kinds of people ought to offer more to the user.

1. Hotcinfin Planner

    Our first suggestion is the Hotconfin 2021-2022 planner. While it is a scheduler, there is a lot more that it offers to individuals. It has individual tabs that cover all kinds of productivity things such as your goals, reminders, to-dos, and to relax.

    And while people can certainly be using their phone rather than this, a productive individual should know we’ve grown numb to our phone’s reminders. It’s not out of the question for a productive person to see a phone notification and delete it before immediately forgetting about it. When you write things down, not only does it help with your writing, but it tends to stick more.

    Buy Hotcinfin planner here.

    2. Elite Weekly Planner

      As mentioned above, physical planners have a way of making us remember important things in our life. While the one suggested above covers a number of things, there might not be enough space in those planners if someone has a typically busy schedule.

      If someone you know has a particularly busy day, gifting this Elite weekly planner can be good. It has 54 sheets which is more than enough to plan out the 52 weeks in a year and then some. It’s also dateless so you don’t have to worry about the timing of this gift.

      Get the Elite weekly planner here.

      3. Getting Things Done

        The final of the productivity gifts we’re suggesting is the book “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity”. While a book might not seem like the best gift – compared to something more action-oriented – productivity isn’t always about making progress.

        In some cases, it pays to read up on new strategies and perspectives to help yourself grow. In the case of the overly productive individual, reading this book could give them new ideas and ways to make the most of the time they get. This is crucial as even if someone is super productive, they could still experience a lot of stress in the process.

        David Allen’s approach to productivity is quite unique and has helped a significant amount of people reduce stress and present methods that anyone can put into action.

        Pick up a copy of Getting Things Done here.

        For People Who Want to Stay Focused

        Another aspect to productivity is getting into a workflow. During this flow state, people’s productivity levels increase significantly and can get a lot of things done in that state of mind. The only issue with this state of mind is that you need incredible focus and maintain that level of focus. Depending on the person, some can get into that flow state easier while others will struggle with it.

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        For those having some issues with it, we have some suggestions for productivity gifts to offer.

        4. Kitchwit Privacy Sign

          Even with a pandemic going on, people are still working in a designated spot. In the cases of many, it’s a guest room or some office with a door. In these situations, a privacy sign like this can be very helpful. It flips between don’t disturb, free to knock, and away.

          This makes the list something cheap and also a way to clearly tell people whether you are focused and don’t wish to be disturbed. After all, distractions are the biggest ways to distract people and having a sign to curb the amount allows that person to focus more.

          Buy the Kitchwit privacy sign here.

          5. Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

            Even if the person doesn’t listen to music at all, headphones are oddly great productivity tools. Part of the reason for that is the noise-cancelling headphones are able to block out sounds quite a bit.

            Again, distractions take the shape of all kinds of things. From birds chirping outside to snowblowers making sounds. Being able to cancel the outdoor sounds will allow the user to focus and not be pulled away from various sounds.

            Buy some noise-cancelling headphones here.

            6. White Noise Sound Machine

              Along the same lines as the noise-cancelling headphones, another way to be blocking out sounds is having a white noise machine. These machines work wonders as ways of cancelling noise and allowing people to focus.

              The reason for that is that white noise is at a frequency that allows us to focus and get things done. It can also help with people sleeping as well. The unique thing about this particular white noise machine is that it has different frequencies that you can adjust to. It makes for great productivity gifts for those who want to cancel out noise.

              Buy the white noise sound machine here.

              For People Who Like to Keep Things Organized

              Productivity for other people means being organized at all times. These are the people that always have a clean desk and have specific spots for everything. When staying organized, there are several ways that you can go about it. Below are some gift ideas to consider.

              7. Desk Organizer

                Organizers are of course a necessary part of staying organized. They keep clutter contained in a specific area so it doesn’t take over the entire desk. It also keeps essential tools and everyday items within a convenient spot that can save a person’s time.

                This one is good at storing big and small items that you may need when you’re working on your desk. Being able to have a spot for the files and gadgets can be very helpful to even the most organized people.

                Buy the Desk Organizer here.

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                8. Label Maker

                  Another great way for staying organized is having labels for various things. Folders, binders, books, and other things, having labels is a way to get access to something specific quickly.

                  This label maker is a great one as it prints off labels effortlessly and offers 14 font types, 97 frames and 600 symbols. It’s able to print up to 2 lines on labels up to 12 millimetres wide.

                  Purchase the label maker here.

                  9. Bagail Packing Cubes

                  Being organized isn’t always about being organized in the office. It also means being organized in other aspects of your life. Packing cubes is a nice way to be organized in other aspects of one’s life and can be used beyond travelling.

                  These packing cubes, while designed for travelling, can serve as other ways of organizing. These various cubes serve as backpacks, camping, saddlebags, and more. Their versatile nature makes them unique and fitting in either of these scenarios. An organizer is bound to use these in several ways.

                  Get the packing cubes here.

                  For People Who Want to Reach Their Goal in the New Year

                  Too many productivity folks like to set goals around the turn of the new year. Unlike many people, these are goals that they want to be achieving and don’t set them aside months into the new year.

                  For the serious productivity people, give them one of these productivity gifts.

                  10. The Habit Builder System

                  A goal, in reality, boils down to a habit that people are building. Want to be healthy? Build a habit of working out and eating healthy. Want to make more money? Build a habit that can generate more revenue. Want to be achieving any kind of goal? Build a system around building a habit.

                  Having a planner like this is very helpful for those looking to build systems that allow them to achieve their goals. The beauty about this planner out of others is that it goes into extensive detail about your habits. You’ve got space to plan out your month, write down your goals and dive into greater detail and more.

                  Buy the habit builder system planner here.

                  11. RocketBook Fusion

                  Regardless of the type of productive person you are, a planner is a handy tool and each type of planner has something unique to offer. In the case of the RocketBook Fusion, it’s in a completely different class thanks to it being the first environmentally friendly one.

                  Like any planner out there, it has sections that allow you to plan out your day and month. You’ve also got a task list amongst other typically planners. Where this book really shines is the fact you’re able to upload all of the information you write down into this 42-page notebook into one of the many cloud services that are out there. This allows you quick and easy access from your phone while on the go, allowing you to keep this planner at home.

                  Not to mention this saves you the issue of tossing out the planner after you’ve filled up all the pages.

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                  Buy rocketbook fusion everlast planner here.

                  12. SELF Journal by BestSelf

                  The last planner that we’ll cover for goal-oriented people is the self journal. This 13-week planner has a proven track record for helping people crush their goals and to track it on a daily basis.

                  The unique part of this book is that it covers areas beyond setting goals. With sections allowing you to talk about what you are grateful for, it’s a sign that this book changes more than how you are approaching goals. Rather it challenges you to change your way of thinking about life as well.

                  We believe this is worthwhile because of that aspect – despite it only covering a quarter of the year.

                  Buy SELF Journal here.

                  For Those Who Have to Work From Home

                  Even after this pandemic is over, there is still going to be a lot of people working from home as they hold remote positions at their company. For these people, their office and workspace is everything and having something that can liven the area can be helpful. In some cases, the gear that helps with the focus can work, but if you want more options, we’ve listed some more below to consider.

                  13. Quartet Glass White Board

                    Also known as a permanent scratchpad, this is a great gift for those who are otherwise writing down things. Even those working from home jot down various notes or things to do. Having a pad can be very helpful for these people as some may pull out their phone to jot down notes and lose focus or being harmful to the environment by jotting down the information on a sticky note.

                    By having a scratchpad to rely on, it’s easier and more convenient. Furthermore, it offers enough space that it can be positioned in any direction and be used for any sort of purpose. Also, the glass on this white board is very durable, able to last much longer than other whiteboards.

                    Buy Quartet glass whiteboard here.

                    14. LapGear Designer Lap Desk

                      Remote workers are able to work from anywhere and many of them will probably have a laptop. Whether they use it exclusively or whenever they’re out, having a laptop resting on one’s lap isn’t a good idea. To avoid that, having a cooling fan or a lap desk is ideal.

                      Why we went for this lap desk is that it can cover even the larger laptops. It also has a pocket in the back for your phone. Furthermore, the padding that it uses has a unique design and is built for comfort, allowing the user to not be concerned about plastic feet digging into their legs.

                      Get LapGear designer lap desk here.

                      15. Artificial Plants

                        Plants have an effect of allowing people to focus. While this attributed to real-life plants, the same can be said about artificial plants as well. They are still realistic and completely remove the need for watering them – even though many office plants require little maintenance to begin with.

                        While there is nothing unique about these plants, they do come in a batch of six, allowing you to mix and match or bring some of them with you to add more of a focused and calming vibe to an area one works at.

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                        Purchase Soil & Style succulents artificial plants here.

                        For Working Parents

                        The equation to productivity gets really muddled up when there is a kid involved. Kids can often be points of distraction and more for those looking to boost their productivity. For those who are juggling raising a family and looking to get the most out of their work sessions, here are some gift ideas to help them out.

                        16. Neck Massager

                          While it won’t help with focusing, a massager is a great productivity gift since it allows someone to relax. Sometimes the best productivity method is to just calm down and relax. On top of that, not everyone has the time or money to pay for a professional massage therapist. So having some other way to massage yourself will help out significantly.

                          In the case of this neck massager, we suggested it as it also focuses on the user’s back as well as neck. It offers three different intensities allowing it to be flexible for users and has temperature control too.

                          Buy it here.

                          17. Tile Mate

                          One of the problems that many people have is leaving things behind. This becomes a bigger issue when you are a parent as you’re normally looking after your things as well as your kids. Forgetting something when going out can be disastrous and ruin an otherwise productive session.

                          Tile Mate is a product that is able to fix this problem. All that you have to do with this is attach it to an item – like your keychain or bag – and it’ll create an automatic GPS. So long as you’re in your house, you should be able to track it thanks to an app on your phone. It’s a handy tool compared to the various other options.

                          Pick up a pair of Tile Mates here.

                          18. Espresso/Coffee Maker

                            Coffee or espresso is one way for many parents to get through the day. On top of that caffeine has a way of sharpening one’s focus and being highly productive in the right situations. It’s ideal for parents who are woken up early by their kids or have to be up early anyway.

                            The beauty about this espresso maker is the various features it comes with. First, it is able to brew quite quickly. The second is that you’re able to switch between two modes, allowing you to fill either a 1.35 ounce cup or a 5 ounce cup.

                            Buy it here.

                            Bottom Line

                            Whether you’re thinking of a gift for your friend or partner, we hope that these productivity gifts have sparked some ideas to pick up. Better yet that we’ve made your shopping easier this year with one of the items mentioned above.

                            Featured photo credit: Simona Sergi via unsplash.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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