L iving in your inbox? We hear this complaint so often we thought we’d provide some more specific strategies on using Outlook to manage your mail. In this post we’re going to focus on clearing any backlog and setting the right systems in place to prevent any future pile-ups. The upcoming Easter break provides the perfect opportunity to show that inbox a bit of tough love. Up for the challenge? Read on:
O ur previous posts for this month discussed both the essential strategies every manager needs to know and the best ways for managers to motivate their teams. Well, now it’s time to put those theories into the context of real life situations: thank you to all subscribers who have shared their experiences with us. Read on, then, to see what challenges other managers regularly face and what strategies we’ve recommended to overcome them.
In our previous post, we discussed two key strategies that enable managers to perform their roles more effectively. This time round, we’re going to explore the best ways that managers can motivate their team members to succeed (and remember, we’d love to hear your stories for inclusion in our final March post). Once again, we’re taking a PEP less-is-more approach: four key strategies are all that’s required for you to engage, support and motivate each member of your team.
At PEPworldwide we’ve observed that managers often struggle to, well, manage – to balance the diverse needs of their teams with the specific requirements of their own roles. So this month’s posts will focus on the key strategies that help managers both boost their individual performances and maximise the performance of their teams. We thought we’d kick off the month by sharing what, in our experience, are the two most important ways to improve your ability to manage effectively and ensure you are maximising your company’s biggest asset: your people.
We’d love to hear from you, too: what are the biggest challenges you face as a manager, team leader or decision-maker? Tell us your stories and we’ll explore these experiences and more in our final March post.
T he working year (and, typically, the glorious summer weather) is now well underway for most of us, so we thought the time was right to check in, review our previous posts and ensure that our suggestions are proving useful. So please take a few minutes to think about what challenges you face in the workplace and what sort of posts would provide the most value for you – and then drop us a quick message. Now’s a great time to join our online community of like-minded professionals who are all sharing their advice, challenges and successes: everyone who fires through a bit of feedback goes in the draw to win an elegant glass carafe set and a copy of Personal Efficiency Program founder Kerry Gleeson’s definitive book on productivity, The Personal Efficiency Program: How to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed and Win Back Control of Your Work.
W e see it time and time again, at every level of an organisation and in every industry: employees who are overwhelmed by the volume of email they receive and stressed about their inability to process it. And the ramifications of an overflowing inbox go beyond increased stress on individuals: any issue which affects an employee’s efficiency has an impact on the productivity of the entire company. So if you’re inundated with email, have a read of our suggestions below. Not only is it possible to regain control, it’s easier than you think.
IN our previous post, we discussed five of the best ways to set realistic, relevant goals. But that’s only half the story – because how you set about accomplishing those goals now is just as important as how you clarified them in the first place. Once again, a well thought-out approach is essential. So this time, let’s take a look at five ways to set yourself up for success:
E asing yourself out of that recliner and back into work? Simply sitting back down at your desk can feel like an accomplishment (bonus points if you’re not holding a cocktail). However, since you no doubt followed our advice on pre-Christmas planning, hopefully you’ve enjoyed a stress-free start to the working year and are already thinking about exactly what you want to achieve over the coming months. But before you get too far ahead, remember that effective goal-setting does require a bit of careful thought. Let’s take a look at five of the best ways to ensure your goals are the right combination of aspirational and attainable:
B ringing your work home with you is never a good idea and, if you’ve completed PEP, this won’t be an issue for you anyway. But if you haven’t already, do consider bringing home the PEP strategies you use at the office – because as our suggestions below demonstrate, PEP’s principles for increasing efficiency go well beyond the workplace. Let’s explore a few ways these strategies can transform your home life, too.
T ough day at the office? Working remotely is becoming increasingly popular and for many, working in a traditional office environment is a thing of the past. In fact for some, remote working becomes a necessity rather than a choice: with the news that a number of office buildings in Wellington remain closed after the November 14 earthquake, now seems a good time for us at PEPworldwide to share our tips on how to stay just as productive when you work out of the office as when you work in it.
T oday is Thanksgiving Day in the States – although it’s possible that the widespread unrest following the US presidential election will continue to blight celebrations for our American friends. While Thanksgiving is not typically a holiday that New Zealanders recognise, perhaps this is a good time for us too to be thankful that – at the moment at least – we live in a country of comparative political stability.
Most New Zealanders, however, will now be looking forward to Christmas. And as the year draws to a close, we tend to start thinking about family. At PEPworldwide, we like to think of all our clients and past participants as part of our extended PEP family – so we thought this would be a good opportunity to share a little family history with you. We’d like to think that providing a brief backstory – how PEP evolved from one man’s practical suggestions into a global network of businesses in over thirty countries – will help to put our commitment to our company into context. Read on, then, for the story of PEP:
It may seem early to be thinking about Christmas, but look around: chocolate Santas are already tempting us in supermarkets, save-the-dates are filling your in-box and the usual suspects are releasing Christmas albums (Neil Diamond, we’re looking at you). Don’t leave it until twelve days before Christmas to plan your work calendar around your holiday: now is the perfect time to be thinking ahead. So with this in mind, we’ve collated the top suggestions from our own facilitators, from outside the productivity industry and from the Internet about how to successfully manage your Christmas deadlines. At PEP we’re all about achieving what matters – and in this case, it’s a well-earned break from work concerns
H alloween’s just round the corner, but forget creepy clowns and sugar-crazed kids: sometimes nothing’s more frightening than a growing pile of tasks you’ve been putting off. Time is arguably our most precious commodity – so why are we so good at wasting it? Because this is what procrastination does: it robs us of the opportunity to achieve something meaningful. It undermines our efficiency, decreases our productivity and increases our stress. And let’s face it: these consequences are unlikely to have a positive effect on your work or personal life.
There’s a substantial quantity of research into the psychological origins of this universal human trait. And one of the biggest causes? Fear of failure. At its most basic level, fear is designed to protect us from pain – including emotional pain. We cling to the hope that if we procrastinate long enough, we will feel more confident, be better prepared or a difficult situation will improve. Unfortunately, more often than not, the reverse is true.
So how do we counteract this unhelpful instinct?
P erhaps we should begin by saying that we know that the Internet is already crammed with blogs on procrastination, time-saving strategies, tips on email management and more.
Obviously, as productivity specialists, we don’t want to contribute to this clutter. But as leaders in our industry, we do feel that we’re in a unique position to provide valuable commentary on the varied issues confronting executives in the modern workplace. And so what we intend to do with our blog is act as your filter: we’re going to sort through the latest research on boosting business performance, we’ll identify workplace trends and we’ll collate the newest and most effective ideas in maximising efficiency – so that you don’t have to. Think of us as quality control. After all, this is what we do best: help people to regain control by identifying what matters most.
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