Losing Track of Time at Work

Losing track of time at work is often related to mental health. Time management is a crucial skill for most of the jobs, and the managers have to recognize if an employee is able to guess the period of time for their projects. How can you measure productivity and improve time management skills for your employees?

The unproductive days of work

Many of us has had at least one (probably much more) unproductive day of work. A day when everything was more interesting than our tasks. The weather, our favorite futball club, or social media. If that happened to you too, continue reading. 

And it is completely okay to have an unproductive day sometimes. The problem is, that unproductiveness, lack of concentration and procrastination can escalate to non-healthy levels. 

“When is the meeting we were talking about?”

“Is it Wednesday today?”

“Agh, the deadline was yesterday?”

Things can get monotonous, especially if you work 9 to 5, but in order to avoid your boss micro-managing you, you have to overcome on unproductivity and maintain an effective, yet not boring workflow. 

It’s even more important today, because during (and after) the COVID virus many people feel constantly under the weather, which affects their motivation. It was a radical transition from office working to remote working, under lockdown, without any social interaction. The work-life balance breaks, the lifestyle changes, and new habits are emerging without control. 

Why are your employees losing track of time?

The number one reason is the lack of routine. If your employees don’t have a daily routine, it’s easy to forget what day it is, especially if they are working from home. Waking up, getting out of the bed, dressing up and working in specified hours of the day will help creating a routine. Indefinite working hours are nice – but you have to recognize when your employees are losing control. Help your colleagues to maintain a lifestyle, have a lunch break (the same time every day), have a nap, take a short walk or check their messages for 15 minutes in every hour. 

These rituals will help them to feel the time passing. 

What is dyschronometria?

Dyschronometria is a condition of cerebellar dysfunction in which an individual cannot accurately estimate the amount of time that has passed. However, 99.9% of the time you don’t have to deal with dayschronometria. Your colleagues don’t have this mental condition, they are just bored and unmotivated. 

Decrease screen time

Don’t be always online. Ask your colleagues to  limit their screentime of social apps at work. In return, suggest them to limit their screentime of working emails or Slack. This will help them to separate work time and free time. DND mode on their smartphone is effective. They can even try some focus-helping browser extension or app. 

Educate your colleagues and establish a healthy workplace

Educate your teammates to maintain habits that are unique to their days. For example, Monday could be a meating day. Tuesday, paperwork day. Wednesday, creative tasks. And so on. 

However, be up-to-date on your employees’ performance. If someone is more productive at home than one was in the office, leave that colleague alone. He knows what he is doing. 

Organize wellness programs for employees.

How to measure performance objectively

You have to collect data about the performance of your employees. Measure how many days an employee will skip due to illness before and after your wellness program. Measure how much work gets done; see if there is a boom in productivity. 

Do the math and calculate the Return on Investment. And even the Value on Investment. How much did you save? How are the team morale and employee engagement? Did the fluctuation decrease?