Focus on managing your energy, not your time

By Jo Byrd

Jo Byrd

It is all too easy to respond to the increasing demands in your day-to-day job by putting in longer hours. This takes a toll on us in many ways – physically, mentally and emotionally, and in time this can lead to increasing levels of distraction, burn-out, mistakes being made and high staff turnover rates. Most people talk about being too busy, which implies not just a shortage of time but a lack of wellbeing too.

To effectively re-energise their teams, businesses need to invest in their people to ensure that they are more motivated and come to work feeling more energised and ready to succeed at their job. Businesses need to equip their people with the tools to re-energise and motivate themselves, to recognise energy-depleting behaviours and take responsibility for changing those behaviours in order to achieve a more positive outcome.

To ensure that your team are energised, you could take steps to ensure that they have adequate exercise, rest / sleep and nutrition. Whilst it isn’t the firm’s responsibility to police this, educating your team can help them to change their approach in order to exhibit the right behaviours on their own terms.

At Randall & Payne, we encourage our staff to take a lunch break and do something active with it, such as a walk round the grounds or a game of table tennis!

We get involved with national events such as ‘Walk to Work’ and ‘Cycle to Work’ days, as well as active charity fundraisers such as the Gloucester Docks Dragon Boat Regatta or our sponsored 7-mile walk from our Cheltenham-based office to where our corporate charity, Scoo-B-Doo, are based at the neonatal unit at the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.

In March this year, I took part in Cancer Research’s ‘Walk All Over Cancer’ campaign to encourage people to walk 10,000 steps a day whilst raising much needed funds for the charity.

March was also National Bed Month to reinforce the importance of sleep, so we shared their top tips to get a good nights sleep on social media, and organised a pyjama day in which staff could opt to donate a pound to wear their pyjamas or ‘onesie’ to work to raise money for our corporate charity.

We also invest in fruit which is available to staff as a healthy alternative to snack on, and in the past we have run nutritional workshops to help educate our staff to encourage them to make better food choices.

Once your teams are re-energised, you could equip them with the tools to focus their attention when they are working. Many view multitasking as a necessity in the face of all the demands they juggle, but it actually undermines productivity. Distractions are costly: A temporary shift in attention from one task to another – stopping to answer an e-mail or take a phone call, for instance, increases the amount of time necessary to finish the primary task. This is known as “switching time.” It’s far more efficient to fully focus for 45 to 60 minutes, take a true break, and then fully focus on the next activity.

Once people see how much they struggle to concentrate, they can make efforts to reduce the relentless interruptions that technology has introduced in their lives and focus on working more effectively rather than just putting in more hours at the office.

Jo Byrd is HR Director, for current vacancies please check the careers page, or for anything else HR related contact Jo by emailing HR@randall-payne.co.uk or call 01242 776000.

 

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