Five ways to get the most out of your workday

Managing your workday well is a challenge for many with an overdose of information in your day to day life. It gets more difficult to finish numerous tasks within the time period without missing on deadlines when you have only 8-10 hours a day.

Follow discipline

Plan your day ahead. Make a list of to-do things for the coming week. Make a log of events to attend or participate a day ahead. “You will know how much work you will have in hand to manage the next day and prepare accordingly,” says Adecco India managing director Sudhakar Balakrishnan.

Prioritise tasks

Prioritise your work. “Categorise into three segments – what needs to be addressed immediately, what has a mid-term deadline and what can be taken up later. You can then proceed to take up things and finish your work on time,” says Manjunath S R, senior director, HR, Netapp.

Revisit timeline

Stick to your timeline. And to do that be sure you don’t keep unrealistic deadlines. Being realistic with your targets will not only help you finish your work on time but will ultimately add to your productivity as you will have time even to do things which can’t be accommodated in a chaotic work schedule.

“Revisit your pending works to figure out how much you have already completed and what’s left to be done. This will help you keep track of how much time you have for different tasks at hand,” says Mr Balakrishnan.

Organise emails

Emails can be classified into three different types: simple mails that ask for an appointment or your presence for certain events or meeting – respond to them immediately after checking your calendar; informative emails – read them and label them accordingly; and complex mails that seek detailed information, suggestion and ideas – mark them as important and keep a reminder.

You would need to gather info, ideas or figure out certain things before you can respond. Rest are all promotions and you must delete them immediately. “Sorting emails is the most essential part of managing them. If you can do that, you will not have email headache,” explains Manjunath.

Prepare for meetings

Be it a concall or one-on-one interactions, prepare for everything. List down the points you need to raise, doubts to be cleared and answers to be sought for projects/ tasks that are in progress. You will not only have a fruitful meeting but will also ensure that crucial time is not lost.

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