Last week we went to the PPA event 6 Pro Tips to Maximise Productivity for high frequency publishers. A lot of information and advice was given and we learned a lot! Here we have summarised the big takeaways for you.
tasks down into smaller chunks of work
in all areas of pure process
about email habits and practices
work on time
Here we dig a little deeper into these tips by summarising what the main speakers had to say and discuss the relationship between technological and cultural productivity.
Simon Weare – PCS Development Officer
Estimate all the things
little and often
defined productive as the most relevant and valuable thing that you should be
doing right now. `Best resource we have is our mind and our time.’
an advocate of technological productivity. He says we need to use a
module/software that embraces change and allows for organisational visibility.
There should be no hidden activity, all effort and work should be demonstrated
and shown. The system should manage productivity in a way that is visible to
everyone; everyone should be able to see what each other is working on and what
stage it is at.
this system there should be mechanisms to evaluate priorities, frameworks and
estimates to assist in understanding the activity and review these frequently.
to change is a productivity killer and can slow down the progress of your team.
To be productive we have to adapt to change and manage it. To do this we have
to allow and allocate for the scope to change, this means you won’t disappoint
by not delivering but will adapt when the deadline changes or progresses.
Simon says: `if you aren’t measuring it, you aren’t managing it’.
Rich Mansell – PCS Solutions Manager
also an advocate of technological productivity. Rich says we live in a time
critical environment and we need to think productive in terms of software.
We need to
reduce the number of systems in place and instead have just one that can
distribute content to all places. Including software that sends content out to
We need to
think in terms of how software can aid and store content. Most companies have a
large amount of folders, we need to remove this inefficiency so that we can
locate content more quickly without manual intervention.
This will improve staff morale by reducing clicks and tasks. Templates will also help in removing this repetition of work.
4 key areas when choosing any system are: partnership approach, analyse the current workflow, design the bespoke workflow and learn from past experiences.
Hayley Watts – Productivity Ninja
an advocate of cultural productivity. When are you the most focused? When do
you procrastinate? Hayley says we need to manage our attention energy and
pinpoint our most productive hours in our working day and do the most important
things then. Right activity, right time.
lists is one of Hayley’s tips; they help in knowing what to do when your energy
and focus is at a lower level. It helps to also have a done list to keep track
but don’t dwell on what you have not done. Instead focus on what is going to
make the most impact and put your energy into that.
one of Hayley’s tips is to make your emails work for you. Which emails do you
want to be copied into? Communicate your preferences of what will work for you
to your team.
important to protect your productivity levels. We are more likely to make
mistakes when stressed, tired, multitasking or overloading. This will result in
decision fatigue. Rather than carrying on it is more beneficial to take a break
and come back with a clear head. In your break do activities that increase your
energy levels; go for a run, do some reading, or socialise. Find what works for
important to communicate your own deadlines `I’ll be free at 1, I have to do
this task at the moment’. This will protect your hours without impacting your
Be calm, ruthless, weapon savy and human not superhero – Hayley’s definition of a productivity ninja.
There is a marriage between technology and culture; simplifying is the key. We need to manage our focus and energy whilst being able to digest content and integrate systems. Dealing with change by being flexible and open is also key to being productive. It is important to recognise that not all employees are going to be open to change but by working and going on a journey together change is positive.
Think Productive – Getting your inbox back to zero course