At some point, it happens to everyone in business. You feel like a squirrel reacting to the latest interruption keeping you and your employees off their game.
With widely popular open-floor plans, it’s more challenging than ever to stay focused especially with noisy co-workers and limited privacy. If you have a virtual staff, then phone calls might be your nemesis.
If you’re reacting to each and every interruption or hear from your employees about how they are interrupted by too much office chit chat, then I have a quick tip that works like a charm.
Each day, have everyone on your team outline the 1-3 priorities they need to complete and post it on their door or cube. Be aware not to post any project of a confidential nature.
When your employees visit someone’s work area, the priority list serves as a gentle reminder to the team member to think twice before interrupting.
Consider pairing this priority process with specific blocks of time – from 9 – 11 am on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, for example – where interruptions aren’t allowed unless they’re for emergencies. As a team, you may also want to identify what constitutes an emergency.
These simple shifts in the way you work increase productivity and employee engagement. It also curbs cube chit chat, reminds the team of the priorities of the day, and will ultimately improve your profitability.