How the time of day affects your productivity

2019-01-14

How well do you adapt your working day to your productivity? Most of us still have relatively traditional working hours, with a lunch break and one or two coffee breaks. But working from nine to five is not optimal for everyone – for some people, productivity is highest in the morning and for others late in the evening. In this blog post, we have some tips on how you can optimise your time to get the most out of your working day.

Find your best working hours

We have already written about the importance of flexible working hours – and about how, slowly but surely, more companies are implementing them. Letting employees adapt their working day to their productivity is a sure-fire way to increase both focus and results. Not only will it make the staff be happy to solve the puzzle of their daily lives – they will also be better positioned to perform to the absolute best of their ability.

Today there are studies showing that 80% of us are more productive in the morning (source: SvD, Insidan 18/11/2018). Therefore, for many people it works best to do the creative part of their work before lunch and save the more monotonous tasks for the afternoon – when the classic afternoon dip often sets in. If you are among the 20% who are more productive in the afternoon, you should, of course, do the reverse and have a lie-in (if you are able to), come to the office a few hours later and push back the working day. So that you can stay a bit later in the evening when your creativity is at its peak.

Do the right thing at the right time

If you are not able to adjust your working hours (not everybody has that luxury), maybe you can at least adjust at what times during the working day you do certain tasks. In other words – save the more demanding tasks for the morning and go through your e-mail in the afternoon. The main purpose is to optimise the working day in some way so that you (or your team members) are never just kill time because they are too tired or unmotivated to tackle their tasks.

In the same way, it is important to reward team members who are exceptionally efficient – and can perhaps finish a day’s work in five hours. That kind of efficiency is extremely valuable at a workplace. Maybe it makes sense for a team member who is extra fast to finish earlier? As long as the work gets done, of course. Otherwise there is a risk that the most efficient team members just kill time when they have finished – or drag out the tasks to take as long as officially intended.

 

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