The workplace can turn into a warzone if there are many workplace distractions. Everyone is talking in their cubicle like soldiers sitting in the trenches, people are walking around like an army marching here and there, and shoutouts about snacks being available like shoutouts for a grenade attack. It becomes loud and disturbing.
Employees need to be relaxed in mind and body to work efficiently. Or else the true potential will always be hidden, masked by various excuses.
The main problem in reduced employee productivity is found to be workplace distractions. They cripple the concentration of the employees, slowly and discreetly, and no one will know what the problem is.
Mobile phones, the internet, social media, and email are among the top productivity killers.
Removing the distraction does not guarantee the employee’s productivity, but it ensures that they do their job properly and are undisturbed.
Distractions v/s Productivity
There is a fairly opposing relationship between workplace distractions and productivity. You are surrounded by many people in your workplace and with external noise sources.
There may be constructions nearby, busy streets, or airports, and disturbances come to you in all shapes and sizes.
It is a widely known fact that distraction can interfere with productivity. Employees have to face many backslaps of distraction around them, which becomes hazardous to them and the company over a specific time.
Productivity, on the other hand, can reduce workplace distractions. If every employee practices being more productive each day, then many distractions causes vanish automatically.
Everyone can value time and balance working hours to avoid workplace distractions and be more productive.
The most common workplace distractions are in pleasure for us, and we have to find and differentiate between the causes and abolish them altogether.
Types of Workplace Distractions
Social Media and Phone Usage
We all thought that Facebook was the ultimate addictive web application we would get until TikTok arrived. Now, we can get to see baffoons around every corner.
These social media applications are addictive and exciting but primarily addictive. As a result, everyone tends to eye at the phone now and again.
Whenever there is a problem in ongoing work, employees turn to their smartphones searching for relaxation instead of brainstorming.
The work solution is not attempted well as most of the time is wasted on phones, and the quality of work decreases. Employees knowingly cannot stop this behavior because they are addicted.
Problem-solving is like putting a thread in a needle, and it comes to you in a flash. You need to have a persistent mind to work out all the information and derive the result.
But, if a video meeting call suddenly starts ringing, every idea generated up to that instant is flushed out.
Unmanaged meeting schedules and unexpected calls are pretty annoying for employees.
Meetings help plan and improve the ongoing work but are hurdles for the employees’ productivity at the particular instance. They are the wrecking ball for our idea castle.
Employees cannot ignore the calls from their employer or maybe something important. They have to answer quickly, and everything they have built up till that moment is lost or disoriented.
In an office, there is always someone who never stops talking. It may be you or me, but we will never know or do not want to know.
There is noise everywhere in a workplace: a bird chirp here, a floor creak there, someone talking on the phone, nibbling on chips, or stretching their hips.
Employees have difficulty concentrating if they have sharp hearing or weak mind focus. The noises will get to you now and then.
When there is some noise, it distracts and behaves like a wall of confinement from which we cannot move forward. Our thinking speed is retarded, which makes us pretty annoyed.
Emails and Notifications
Many messages are shared in a day. There are emails, chats, text or voice messages between employees in the office. With every message comes a notification and suspense.
Even if we know nothing is important in a message, we want to remove the red dot for unread messages and stop the jumping application icon. The temptation is strong.
You must view emails and messages in an organized period for work productivity, and that time may be at the end of every hour or after task completion.
It is better to pre-inform your coworker about your message encountering strategy to avoid misunderstanding.
Self-control is the best solution for this disturbance, but it is impractical.
Eating is the easiest job. But if we start stuffing with both hands to finish it faster, we will get choked.
Westerners are even wiser, and they use spoons. Slow and a step at a time will make a task completion process pleasant.
Employees practice doing many work side by side to test and improve their capacity at the workplace.
There may be different reasons, but to excel in their position and the potential, they try to outsmart others by multitasking.
The distribution of concentration will increase employees’ stress and degrade the quality of work, resulting in nothing, not even “product” in productivity.
Independent expertise in different works for a certain time may develop the capacity for multitasking after some experience. But forcing yourself to do it is not so wise.
Breaks with Friends
Breaks are everyone’s favorite, and short breaks are suitable for being sharp throughout the day. But, we practice groups while taking breaks in the workplace.
There are smoke buddies, snack friends, and restroom entourages. It is quite funny to see these hordes of people and be among them, but it is our nature to seek companionship in office activities.
Taking a break may be a compulsion for a person but an excuse for others. If breaks are taken as group activities, it becomes problematic for management and the employee regarding the productive output.
You must develop a habit of patience and self-control from being distracted from your work.
You need to break the breaks with friends and be more composed in your workplace.
Remedies for the Workplace Distractions
Workplace Distractions cannot be completely neutralized. There will always be someone shouting in silence, and we will always find disturbances.
Even pin drop silence creates an environment where we search for possible noise and get distracted.
For the usual workplace distractions, we can apply some methods to reduce them.
- You need to shorten your break times. Only a few minutes of walking or other activities in the office is enough to get you to freshen up quickly. On lunch breaks, have a habit of going out of the office premises.
- Using software for productivity and project management could be quite handy in carrying out efficient work. Different time tracking tools will help you properly organize your time routine.
- You should propose to everyone in the office to have meetings at a specific time or day in a week so that there would be more saying and less looping during the meeting.
- You should not linger more time in messages and emails and in replying to them. Just be clear in what you want to say and have an imperative style in replies. Do not see the message as soon as there is a notification. You should have an interval time to see the emails and messages.
- You have to stop holding your phone while at work. Just put it in a drawer. If you get a call, you will hear it, but if it is in front of you, you are more likely to open up for social updates. Take a walk instead of using mobile phones if you have a thought block during work.
- You have to do proper exercise in the morning to develop focus and concentration. If you practice yoga for ten to fifteen minutes in the morning and do quick cardio-vascular routine exercise, you will develop the proper body and mind for any job. If there is pain or ache in the body, it is also very distracting.
The workplace is competitive, and workplace distractions have added more challenges for hardworking employees. There are many other ways to manage the distracting factors and recover better results.
We have to be clear in our minds that our self-control and intellectual capacity are the only things that make us productive in anything we do. It doesn’t matter what is outside; it only matters what is in our heads and hearts.
As an employee, we have to maintain the environment in our workplace with good public relations and support.
As a team, when we make plans and policies and implement them, we become productive, and every distraction is ignorable and mistakes.
We have to carefully cancel out all the outer influences that harm our productivity at work.
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