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Busy vs Productive: Which One Are You at Work?

August 8, 2018

Let’s face it: within the typical 9-to-5 workday, are you really being productive or just keeping yourself busy in the office? Everyone knows that employees are required to be highly productive every single day. Unfortunately, most employees often emphasise on the busy-looking appearance at work rather than the quality of the productivity they actually perform.

Keeping yourself busy at the office does not always equate to being productive. You might be engrossed in some duties and feeling exhausted from doing it, but most of your tasks are still not accomplished until the end of the day. Hung up workloads are piled up, and you will be overwhelmed to finish the duties.

On the other hand, when you are strategically productive, you will be able to complete all the tasks without being drained during the day. All tasks are timely, and you might still be able to catch a short break time.

Which one would you prefer? Here are some differences between being busy and being productive at work so you can use your time better:

Productive people only put some items on their to-do lists, while busy people have long to-do lists

One noticeable sign that you are productive is when your goals are clear during the day. Jumping from one task to another without clear direction makes you just do a busy work. That being said, it is important for you to begin the day by determining the goals and listing tasks you should have completed by the end of the day. Urgent and importance-based prioritisation will help you to be more productive.

Productive people perform single-task, while busy people perform multi-task

If anything, multi-tasking will not help you get the works done faster. Instead, it will make you have a lack of focus and fail to be optimal in sustaining the quality of your work. Not to mention, you will be caught in super-tiring activities that drain your whole day energy.

Manage your tasks one by one and set the time duration to finish each of them. By avoiding multi-tasking works, duties are done optimally, and you can still have a balanced work-life by managing both working and break times periodically.

Productive people say yes strategically, while busy people say yes to everything

Saying “yes” to every task that lands on your plate might impress your employers that you are highly productive at work. But saying so without any strategies (about the deadline, the time required, the urgency, and the people involved) will hassle yourself during the day.

You will be busy at work, but your main tasks and duties suffer. So, do not easily say “yes” to every task, especially if they are not of your job role. Instead, take some time to measure your capabilities and focus on your priorities first. When everything has been done, manage your time to take on the additional tasks.

Article first appeared on Talentvis.

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