Nowadays, most professionals spend a large part of their workday in an open office. Although some people enjoy background noise, the majority of people find it difficult to concentrate and stay productive in such a noisy environment. If this is the case with you, chances are you’re looking for anything you can do to thrive in an open office. With that said, here are the top five open-concept office productivity tips that might be exactly what you need.
Use plants strategically
Plants are an important part of every workplace. They’re great because they make the place look lovely and keep the air fresh. However, they do even more than that. When placed strategically, plants can help you eliminate distractions. You can combine a few of these to create vision-blocking walls that allow you to focus on nothing but the task at hand. If people in the office tend to get loud, you can also use these things to reduce the noise. Some of the popular, easy-to-care-for indoor plants include the spider plant and peace lily.
Make DIY signs
One of the biggest problems with open offices is that not everyone is working at the same time. Someone else might take a break right when you’re in the middle of an important task and come to talk to you. Distractions like this don’t only lose you time but also make you more likely to make a mistake. To make sure this doesn’t happen, try creating little DIY signs to signal your co-workers you’re busy and to talk to you later. All you need is a piece of paper that you can turn into a note. Use green to signal availability and red to ask your co-workers to stay away.
Get quality earphones
Ignoring all the noise in an open office is usually impossible and you need something that’ll help you do it. The good news is, there are gadgets that have been specifically designed to help anyone block the noise and focus on what they’re doing at the moment. Quality sound-isolating earphones can help you ensure nothing breaks your concentration and are a must-have for anyone working in an open office. Models like Shure SE846 are guaranteed to the trick and fit snugly into your ears.
Put your smartphone into use
It looks like absolutely everyone now uses a smartphone and this little thing might come in quite handy in an open office. In case you rely on hand-written notes to remind you of everything you’re supposed to do the next day, you might want to consider using an app that allows you to save these on your smartphone. The reason behind this is that there’s always a chance of someone else accidentally taking or throwing away your notes. If you think you could use a new smartphone, make sure you consider models such as Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus or Xiaomi Mi 9.
Make the most of meeting spaces
Sometimes, no matter how much you try, eliminating all the distractions threatening to hurt your productivity becomes impossible. Luckily, most offices have designated meeting spaces and using these spaces to finish important tasks might be a good idea. Meeting rooms are usually designed to block all the noise and allow everyone to really focus on what’s going on. Just make sure no meeting is about to take place when you decide to use it. If not, you can at least choose to go to a meeting space when making important phone calls.
If you’re operating from an open-concept office, you know just difficult things can get when everyone starts talking and taking breaks. Follow the five tips covered in this post to eliminate all the distractions and be able to stay productive.