The word “multitasking” defines the performance of multiple tasks at one time. In common sense, the job requires a person who is good at multitasking.
In the business world, multitasking is a must-have skill for any employee, yet most workers feel they are being asked to do too many tasks because people have never learned exactly how to multitask. Multitasking is a learned skill. By learning how to multitask efficiently, you can reduce your workday stress, increase your productivity, and enjoy your work once again. An increased workload forces the worker into multitasking, which may be effective for a short period of time, but over the long term, causes excessive stress. In addition, multitasking is about training the brain to channel energy in an efficient and effective manner so you can accomplish more in less time. And believe it or not, one of the keys to knowing how to multitask is to slow down to accomplish more.
Following there are some techniques that will help you mentally slow down, so you can finally learn how to multitask.
Practice is essential to mastering the skill. Why? Because practice makes something seem routine, and when something is routine, it’s no longer stressful. As you master doing multiple routine things, then move on to slightly more difficult tasks. Gradually work up to the number of tasks you normally do. So, if you want to do all the things you do each day in a more efficient manner with less stress, take a step back and teach your body and mind how to work up to the productivity level you desire.
- Set Priorities
Switching brain channels repeatedly actually reduces your memory recall. When you’re performing multiple tasks that require your attention, your brain gets overloaded, as it can only process information from one channel at a time. Therefore, do not multitask if the assignment requires your full attention. Once that urgent or detailed task is complete, then you can go back doing the other tasks you normally do. This step will save you lots of rework, as you can make mistakes when your brain is overloaded.
- Use Tools
To avoid taxing your brain, write down items you can refer to quickly. For example, if you have a list of items you need to refer to often, put the list next to your phone or computer for quick access. In this way, you won’t have to waste brain energy on such mundane information.
- Shift multitasking to single tasking
Rest is one of the key components to increase personal energy and productivity. So, every two to three hours, stop multitasking and allow yourself to do just one thing for fifteen to twenty minutes. At the end of this rest period, you’ll feel refreshed, alert, and ready to tackle more tasks and you’ll do so with fewer mistakes than if you go on through your tasks without resting.
- Take a brain break
Most employers offer their full-time staff a lunch break and two fifteen-minute breaks throughout the day. Most people do not take their break, and as such, they’re not giving their mind a true break from the stresses of the day. Use break time to walk around the building or sit outside. Do whatever you like during these fifteen minutes to clear your head and give your brain a rest. Give your mind a total break from the workday tasks.
Benefits of Employee Multitasking
Being a multitasking employee is a good start to be hired because employers receive some benefits from hiring this kind of employee.
This is because a multitasking employee is beneficial for organizations as it reduces the cost of hiring new employees and training them. Human resource professionals need to be extremely careful while recruiting a new person, so that he does not create problems later. Moreover, a new individual needs to be inducted well into the system. Proper training must be given for him/her to understand his/her job responsibilities and also know what is expected out of him/her. Employees with multi-tasking abilities can perform many duties at a single time and hence bosses do not have to invest much in hiring and training new individuals. Rather than appointing a new person, it is always better to rely on someone who is in the system for quite some time and can perform multiple responsibilities. Moreover, they also save on their salaries. When a single person can handle multiple things, employers do not have to hire specific individuals for particular tasks.
In addition, multitasking employees certainly increase the productivity of the organization. They deliver more output with minimum resources. Rather than appointing five new people for a process, a multi-skilled employee can do everything on his own. In such a case, employers do not need five computers, telephones, drawers or workstations but just one. Nothing is better than a single person doing the work of five people. Employees with multitasking abilities have better chances of survival than others even in the worst situations. They are the ones who do not have to depend on others for every small thing and believe in doing several tasks on their own.
Multitasking employees do not have the time to indulge in unwanted activities as they themselves are busy with their own work. Such employees are not rigid and accept additional responsibilities with a smile. For them performing multiple responsibilities is not their job, but passion. In general, they actively participate in various training programs and other sessions or seminars with an open mind to upgrade their existing knowledge and hone their skills which eventually would benefit not only the employee but also the organization. Multitasking employees are successful not only in their current job position but wherever they go and whatever they do as well.
Anyway, multitasking is a part of our world. If you want to succeed, you need to learn how to multitask, so it doesn’t overwhelm you and cause unnecessary stress. By simply slowing down and working up to the performance level you desire, you can multitask effectively and increase productivity. Simply put, learning how to maintain your highest level of mental functioning is your key to multitasking success.
By Fabiola Sibilla