When the pressure is on to execute large-scale projects and deliver on big initiatives, the all-too-familiar feeling of never-ending overtime can be particularly exhausting for you and your team. Studies show that when the demand for deliverables is high, more work time doesn’t equate to greater output. When it comes to productivity in the workplace, a quick little spin on the age-old adage can provide all the guidance you need: less makes more.
As one of the leading suppliers of office furniture in Denver, we know how hectic the workplace can be. So here are a few principles to guide you through your next big organizational undertakings to make sure you and your team stay happy, rested and productive.
- 40 is the Magic Number
Studies show that 40-hour work weeks make for an optimal balance between work and rest. Make sure you and your team is taking plenty of downtime with family and friends.
But why not more? Further studies show that while a 60+ hour work week makes for a small short-term productivity boost, it’s not sustainable in the long run.
- Bursts Might Work
Short bursts of hard work over time can bolster productivity if contained in three-week increments. When planning projects, utilizing overtime to strategically meet deadlines can be a worthwhile tactic.
However, you should always plan for a drop-off in productivity after these high-energy bursts. One schedule you could consider are 4-day work weeks with 3-day weekends in between.
- Time to Take a Break
Over a long period of time, overtime can exhaust creative thinking and problem solving. Sometimes the best solution to any project problem can come to you once you step away from it. So make sure you give yourself some time to go home or take a break.
Furthermore, sleep is one of the best reset buttons for creativity. Make sure you’re getting 8 hours of sleep a night to keep your energy consistent.
- The Illusion of Productivity
If you maintain objective standards when gauging the quality of work, you will find that consistent ongoing productivity boosts that result from extended overtime are just an illusion. While your team members may report that they feel more productive when working extended hours, this may not actually be the case. It has been proven over and over again that rest will help achieve better results.
- Bite Sized Teams
Split larger organizational groups into small multi-function teams to tackle larger projects. Once you do this, put replicable systems in place so that you can break down future projects in the same way.
- Stick With the Pack
Physically grouping teams together in their own room has been shown to increase productivity. With enough space and privacy, teams focus on the task at hand, minimizing non-team distractions. Separate “huddle” areas can be organized for smaller group meetings, phone calls and other conversations.
- Team Building
Put together teams with a wide variety of skill sets to accomplish the task at hand. If each team is equipped with the skills to tackle every facet of the problem, team members won’t have to multi-task (which can result in up to 15% decreases in efficiency).
- Under Promise to Over Deliver
Set expectations just below what you know your team is capable of to make sure you’re not making anyone overextend themselves. Creativity occurs in the space between the end of one project and the next, so give your team some room to think!