Three years after working from home became the new normal and more and more people left traditional jobs to launch their own ventures, many now find themselves wondering: why am I less productive than I used to be? While a plethora of life and career challenges can become obstacles to daily productivity, there are also many mundane reasons people start losing their drive. If you’re becoming noticeably less productive with work but are unsure of why, or how to turn it around, consider some of the most common constraints people eventually encounter that lead to suffering productivity.
Even with return-to-office trends, a lot of people still work at home—at least part of the time. Owners of small businesses and start-ups often work at home a great deal of the time, especially when business demands fall outside the typical work day or owners have to play catch-up on important administrative tasks. Creating an appealing and enlivening workspace may help induce more productive energy. Updating the décor and replacing old, bulky, space-consuming office equipment in favor of more modern, streamlined equipment, furniture, and devices can make an outdated, crowded space roomier and more stylish.
Working from home or from varied remote locations can be a preferable option for a lot of workers, but it comes with its own set of challenges. Productivity suffers when your work takes you to places where there is a lot of noise or interruptions.
Feeling uninspired at work is one of the biggest reasons workers cite for why they leave their jobs. While all jobs come with some degree of tedium, driven workers become complacent when they feel that their job presents no new challenges or opportunities.
Virtually every job requires some time to be devoted to repetitive, routine tasks in order to stay organized and keep team workflow running smoothly. But when the time needed for what is perceived as menial office tasks begin to eclipse the time available for more creative pursuits, people begin to feel mired in paperwork and pointless busy work. Automating tools that help streamline financial and clerical tasks are widely available to businesses of all sizes to help reduce the amount of time spent on routine management and organization so that more time can be devoted to job aspects people feel passionate about.
Remote and hybrid work, along with the dramatic rise of the gig economy, have presented workers with a wider range of possibilities regarding how they structure their time. While the standard 9-5 workday is falling out of favor for a lot of people, that doesn’t mean they necessarily work fewer hours—just different ones. Productivity typically suffers when people are overworking themselves and not focusing enough on rest and leisure.
In addition to financial problems, burnout remains one of the leading causes of small business failure within the first few years. New business owners expect to take on a lot, but everyone has their limits. Delegating and outsourcing certain tasks that go beyond your skills, expertise, or time availability, can go a long way in preserving the energy needed for boosting sales, acquiring customers, and improving products. Online, cloud-based tools can help businesses on a budget by connecting them with remote administrative assistants and bookkeepers, as well as offering affordable, DIY software tools that take care of a lot of necessary tasks in the least amount of time.
Online, cloud-based tools can assist with turning around many of the common contributors to reduced productivity. Cloud-based, mobile-optimized tools can be accessed universally from any device, so they allow you to get rid of a lot of outdated equipment to free up more space; they also give you the freedom to change your work environment to suit your needs because they go wherever you do. They also help standardize and streamline many of the most time- and energy-consuming tasks so that you get more of your own time and energy back before falling victim to burnout. Online tools can be adopted to assist with: sending and following up on invoices, issuing payments, printing checks, providing customer service, creating schedules, designing budgets, and running payroll, among other important tasks. A little time spent researching the best and most affordable software for your business can ultimately give you back more of your time in the long run, while also cutting down on errors and paperwork each day for greater overall productivity.