You’d Be Faster If You Slow Down

The pace of business is accelerating. Expectations for email, text or phone call responses is closing in on immediate. The solution? Slow down. Pay attention to what’s around you. Pretend you’re watching a GoPro video playback of yourself at your desk. What do you see? Are you frenetically going from task to task? Bouncing from monitor to monitor glancing at emails, your phone, starting and stopping tasks? If so, this work style can create significant inefficiencies.

Work fatigue is a real thing, a “gerbil on a wheel” feeling. No opportunity to stop, relax and breathe. At the end of a typical workday, do you feel accomplished, successful and balanced? Or do you feel like you didn’t get your stuff done, loose ends, appraisals not completed, emails and phone calls not returned. Do your days blur together? Are you working weekends? If you are, no bueno.

What’s the secret? Intervals. When you’re working, you should be working. When you’re resting, you should be resting. Time management and productivity (office and work exercise) is best executed with intervals. That rest allows you to come back stronger and faster. For many, “taking a break” means slowing down your multitasking. That’s not a break. Bigger recovery periods are called vacations. Make sure you schedule interval vacations throughout your work year to recoup from the day-to-day workload.

It seems counterintuitive, slowing down to speed up. However, like working out, if you don’t take a break your effectiveness rapidly diminishes as you tire. For those of us old enough to get a free small drink at (participating) Chick-fil-A, taking interval breaks while exercising is key to not getting discouraged. I recommend Gymboss, an interval timer. Exercise for 1 minute, 15 second rest, 8 sets, and repeat, as an example.

A Tabata approach to your business could amp up your productivity. This high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout concept requires you to identify your weak (work) areas. Invest time, money and training to improve your business health, which includes comp management, report writing and appraisal workflow. Make your workout fun by creating a competitive office environment, such as “high producer appraiser” award or fewest report mistakes challenge.

Take a second to stop and look up from your desk. Are you doing everything the most efficient way possible? Keep saying “yes” to new ways of improving your appraisal firm and your report creation. Continually improve your office efficiencies, but don’t forget to take breaks. Feel the power of intervals. Transform your business by moving faster by slowing down. You’d be faster if you slow down.