Here's six things to think about incorporating into your work day to make you more efficient.
1. Close your office door and concentrate on the biggest toughest project on your desk. Procrastination is a waste of valuable time.
2. Establish "quiet hours" for uninterrupted concentration and make sure people around you know what rules apply. Have all the materials you need so you can make maximum use of the allotted time.
3. Concentrate similar tasks into groups and do them all at once - things like returning phone calls, writing checks, going through mail and periodicals. These activities can often be done more efficiently once you get the appropriate pathways in your brain activated.
4. Keep track of how long you can concentrate on various tasks before being distracted. Capacity will differ depending on the nature of the task. Then set a goal to maintain it a bit longer the next time.
5. Consolidate free time into blocks to create more extended periods for deeper concentration. Maximizing concentration is a balancing act. Switching from one thing to another too often is inefficient because disconnecting and re-focusing both take time. On the other hand, trying to maintain focus for too long can be counterproductive because the mind naturally tends to shift depending on the sense of urgency.
6. Delegate effectively.