1. If we focus we can do more in less time, which makes better use of our energy.
2. Single-tasking is picking the most important task to work on first and performing that task as exclusively as possible until it is either complete or we are out of whatever time we allotted for the job.
3. Management can help employees by offering specific tips on how to single task.
In Work Mastery, we touched on how inefficient multitasking is and how you can implement single tasking into your work time. Week 8 is the time to teach your employees how to do this.
Ask people to build the opportunity to single-task on the most important things they need to get done. Once they do, they will see amazing efficiencies emerge and be able to do splendid work with less effort.
You can encourage them to set timers so they are not always looking at the clock. If they work on multiple screens, suggest they cut back to one, provided it doesn’t interfere with their responsibilities.
Management must present single-tasking as something simple for people to do. They can start by identifying one hour of every single day when they can work with no distractions. If that is successful, ask them to find a second hour block. In time, the practice will become routine.
Some tips for single-tasking include:
Organizing your tasks before you start the day
Setting aside specific times to focus solely on the high-priority activities
Batching emails and phone calls
Working off one screen
Turning off notifications
Meditating for a few minutes before starting focused time of work
Putting measures in place to stave off any anticipated interruptions
Scheduling walks or other rewards throughout the day
There are some deeply held beliefs about the value of doing many things at once. By helping your teams understand the energy and efficiency loss associated with managing several things at the same time, you can help them dramatically improve their efficiency and well-being.