Sometimes, a lunch break isn’t enough fuel to keep the 9-to-5 fire blazing. Nowadays, employers are doing more with fewer resources, and employees are feeling it. But as a Harvard Business Review article points out, “while time is finite, energy is not.”
According to the article, executives at Sony Pictures Entertainment are aware of a potential drain in employee energy. To counteract it, they’re in the process of implementing “energy management training,” an effort that encourages workers to create their own energy-boosting rituals. Be it a walk in the park or turning off email to fully focus on a project, these rituals are proving successful in increasing employee energy and productivity.
The results of the program have been astounding. A whopping 88 percent of participants claim this change has made them more focused and productive at work, and more than 90 percent of participants say they’re more energized at work.
Whether or not your company takes formal measures to tackle energy drain, you can try the simple suggestions below to make your workday more productive. Consider it your own “energy project.”
- Leave the office for a few minutes to go for a walk. Grab a coffee—or just get some fresh air.
- Think back to the days of cramming for exams or writing essays in college: What music kept you focused and alert? Classical? Heavy metal? Turn it up. (My library jams were Broken Social Scene, Sufjan Stevens, and Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker; I highly recommend them.)
- Allow yourself a few minutes to read an article (bonus points if it’s something in your industry) at various times throughout the day.
- See if it’s possible to stop receiving email for an hour or two while you complete an assignment. You’re far more likely to get into “the zone” when the envelope icon isn’t flashing on your screen every five minutes. Just don’t forget to turn your email back on.