Home 1 Minute Tips Productivity Tips and Ideas

Productivity Tips and Ideas

Productivity Ideas

Gathered at the Women In Optometry Luncheon at SECO and during the online webinar

Based on the results of a productivity survey conducted by Women In Optometry, women ODs identified these challenges to productivity: staffing issues, lack of organization in professional/personal life family demands, lack of energy and lack of authority.

These are the ideas shared at the WO meeting by attendees.

Digital tools and apps:

Apps/tools that save time

Banking: Camscanner – scan documents for expenses, etc.

News synopsis, like The Daily Skimm (delivered to your inbox in the a.m.)

Apps for grocery shopping/pickup; many grocery stores offer these apps

Google Voice: Forwards to your phone, and you can text, call or email from it. It works well without giving our personal numbers.

Apps for navigation and transportation
Uber: Arrange for rides quickly and efficiently
Waze: Waze is the world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app. Join other drivers in your area who share real-time traffic and road info, saving everyone time and gas money on their daily commute.

Apps/tools for motivation:

Exercise apps: Fitbit, AppleWatch
Aaptive: an app that provides personal training, synched to music. (subscription: $9.99 per month)

Security camera check-ins at the office: staff knows you can see and check in at will; also allows rewinding to check on transactions

Apps for organization:

Any number of e-calendars for family and/or work
Life360: Life360 is a family locator, messaging tool and communication app all in one. It simplifies communication for making dinner plans, coordinating carpools, ensuring everyone arrived home safe and more.
Homebase: Homebase allows you to spend less time on paperwork. Use it for employee scheduling, timesheets, communication and much more. Join for free.
AnyList: For sharing lists such as for the grocery store or pharmacy. More than one person can access the lists, and they update automatically. The free version is recommended and works well.

Patient education apps or tools:

Transitions demonstration app: Transitions Optical 360° Virtual Viewer is available to educate patients and also give them a glimpse at how their vision could be enhanced with Transitions products.

Howard and the Amazing Eye Exam: Get your child ready for their first eye exam with this charming story about Howard the Hedgehog. Howard is Star Student this week and is excited to tell his classmates all about his first trip to the eye doctor. From a fun puppet show to cool 3-D glasses, Howard shows the class that visiting the eye doctor isn’t scary at all. Download the e-book.

Amsler Grid:
Android and Iphone

Apps to save money:

Groupon: online coupons for events, stores, entertainment in your area.
Ibotta (cash back coupons)
Shopping apps: like Kroger, HEB that let you grocery shop and pick up (saves time and potentially money because you won’t give in to the impulse buys)
ReceiptHog: Snap photos of your receipts for a chance to win shopping trips and earn Amazon giftcards.

Strategies for Peace of Mind/Family Demands

  • Schedule time for yourself – wake up early if you need to
  • Stop worrying
  • Meditation
  • Work out
  • Personal coaching – not just for fitness, but Mindset coaching, lifestyle coaching
  • Walk – walk the dog, walk with your spouse, walk before work
  • Read books for pleasure
  • Get lost in favorite music
  • Get regular and great sleep
  • Schedule massage/manicures
  • Join the YMCA OR join a more boutique gym if you enjoy/participate more
  • Visit the Chocolate Spa at Hershey, PA
  • Talk with manager/team about the need for and ideas to create a better balance/environment
  • Find a hobby other than work
  • Take time off
  • Eat well
  • Get regular physicals
  • Take long lunches
  • Take off for family events
  • Ask relatives to babysit
  • Educate/involve family in work-related activities
  • Help family see the rewards and results of work
  • “Take the time to do what fill you up without feeling guilty about it.”
  • Take a vacation often. You can go away, but also take a few minutes to have a vacation state of mind during the day to recoup. Allow these times to delegate responsibilities to staff, and once you see how they do, they can reclaim those jobs as their own. This will free up your own schedule.
  • Take time with your kids when they are young. You can’t get that time back!
  • A great read recommended on home/family management.

Strategies for Productivity in the Office

  • Watch Ryder Carroll’s Youtube Videos on creating a Bullet Journal. It’s an amazing way to create and track tasks.
  • Focus on the why
  • Get buy-in on ideas by involving employees
  • Delegate and trust – don’t micromanage
  • Delegate and trust – part 2: Hire good people and get out of the way
  • 5th Saturdays: 4x a year, there’s a 5th Saturday in the month. Use it for an office powwow or a volunteer event.
  • Visualize the outcome: where do you want to be?
  • Manage people who sabotage you/your efforts
  • Schedule training regularly
  • Focus on one item – short training sessions
  • Conduct refreshers on training periodically
  • Develop incentives
  • Empower others
  • Ask questions – seek input for problem-solving
  • Listen
  • Increase cross-training
  • Create a sense of urgency
  • Start every meeting with the positive.
  • Do what can be done right away (if it takes less than 2 minutes, do it now. You’ll have fewer emails, to-do list items at the end of the day)
  • Create a checklist for the following day
  • Be a team player/encourage team players
  • Meeting of the Minds: spend the first 15 minutes of the day talking about the big ideas/goals/etc.
  • Security camera check-ins at home/ Smart Home functionality- so you don’t have to return to make sure you’ve turned off the lights/closed the garage door. Try Nest, which connects to your home smoke detectors and can do much more.

Strategies for Personal/Professional Organization

(also see Apps above for specific tools)

  • Declutter
  • Learn to say no
  • Create lists
    • Prioritize
    • Identify the top 1-2 items per day
    • (CHOOSE ONE of the following, depending on your list, your mood, etc)
    • Do the easy things first – to make your list shorter
    • Do the hard things first – to make the other tasks seem easier
  • Create checklists and cross items off your list to show momentum/progress
  • Schedule time for tasks (insert time for submitting expenses, doing payroll, answering email into your calendar.)
  • Take breaks
  • Complete office activities before leaving for the day

Recommended Books


Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-free Productivity
by David Allen

168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam

Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time by Brian Tracy, which encourages you to do the hard things first and the rest will seem easier. Get the accompanying journal to track your progress: Eat That Frog First Journal: No Excuses to Getting Things Done

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie

The Art of Tidying Up by Kim Carruthers (EBOOK ONLY)

The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande

Thumbnail art courtesy of Pixabay

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