7 Workday Distractions That Are Stopping You From Doing Your Job

November 19, 2015

Career Advice

texting to distraction

There’s always a deadline looming, right? Some people use deadlines to push themselves and work harder while others become overwhelmed and anxious about meeting them. One way or another there’s always some level of productivity we have to maintain at work.

Given our place in the world with every kind of technical interruption possible, here are some of the things you’ll be up against and how you could consider handling them:

  1. Cell phone: if your job requires you to carry one regularly, your only option is to have it on vibrate or turn it off when you really need to get something done. Hard to believe, but some people just keep it tucked away during their workday and check it only on their free time: lunch. If that’s not you, it could be.
  2. Texting: In the ultimate war against productivity, text message notifications can now blast across your computer screen too. But it can be turned off. DO IT! TURN IT OFF! You’re not missing anything. There are plenty of other ways you can be reached. You don’t need every iDevice to constantly interrupt you.
  3. The Interrupting co-worker: Try to see this person as someone who will help you exercise your decorum and communication skills. Be kind but brief with them. If they are always appearing at your desk at a certain time, be ready to show your “busy” side. Put on your headphones, mention your impending deadline, and tell them you’ll respond when you’ve finished your work. If you’re feeling nice,you could schedule a specific time or day to chat.
  4. Family interruptions: Some of these are super important and others will just seem important—but they’re not. You’ll need to distinguish between the two. Have a back up plan or person who can deal with an emergency in case you absolutely need to get your work done.
  5. E-mail: Email allows you to respond at your leisure—so do it! If it’s a work-related email and you can’t respond immediately, send them a message about when you will respond in detail. You can also include some “office hours” written into your signature at the bottom of any e-mail.
  6. Meetings: Depending on where you fall in the corporate food chain, meetings can be adjusted. And programs like Skype or Google Hangouts can help make meetings more flexible and be helpful for your productivity levels.
  7. Procrastination: This is a tough one! Some of us have a propensity for this. The trick is to know yourself and to know the best times of day for you to produce good work. Use those times wisely by having all your social media turned off and getting in an environment that’s conducive to uninterrupted work. Prioritize your tasks and tic off the A-listers first. There’s a reason why you categorized it as an ‘A’ to begin with.

Image via Phillip LeConte/Flickr.

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About Spectrum Brands Careers

Spectrum Brands is a global $5 Billion Consumer Products company headquartered in Middleton, Wisconsin. While you may not be familiar with the Spectrum Brands name, there is no doubt you will recognize some of our brands.

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