There’s no doubt that in a battle between working late and efficiency, the latter would definitely win. Whether we need we have important things to do or not, time for ourselves, family, friends etc really do matter. After all, "All work and no play make Jack a dull boy." Staying late at work once in a while during assignments is perfectly fine. You get to know more about yourself and the nature of your work under pressure. If your work is also something you love doing, then why not work late on such occasions.
Anyway, here are a few tips and tricks to avoid working late and bringing in more efficiency:
When you just arrive at work in the morning is when you can finish most of your work. Set a target and finish it by lunchtime. If you manage to do so, half your battle is won.
Inbox & call back
Once you’ve finished your lunch break, it’s time to make sure you’ve replied to all those queries and appointment calls. Keep the mails and calls to the point and straight forward and mention everything you need to. This way you don’t have to deal with unnecessary interaction to "confirm missing details".
Get off that computer every once in a while and stretch. Improve your circulation, drink water, take a bathroom break etc. After which remind yourself of your target once more and focus again. Ensure that your breaks are short.
Talk to your boss
If your boss gives you a load of work just when it’s time to leave or is being unfair by asking you to work late too often, talk with him. Explain your other priorities to him and how you manage your time well and finish your work on time and efficiently. Ask him to submit assignments to you in the mornings instead. Work out a schedule with him/her.
When there’s about an hour left to go, check what is left to do. If you have finished most of your work in the morning, you probably will have much less to do in the last hour. Reply to the last minute emails. Also, set a rough target for the next day if you can, it will simply make you worry less about work when you’re home.
Finally, when it’s time to leave, don’t take your work home with you no matter how much you love your job. Take a break sit back and relax. Not only is time for yourself very important but you will also be fresh for the next day. Stop worrying, start working and eventually, you will finish on time.
To turn working late into something habitual is merely foolish, both on your part and your superior who asks you to do so. The stress of working too late builds up over time, and you will end up turning you into an irritable monster by staying back past your regular working hours.
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