Staying focused and productive during an eight (or more) hour work day is a challenge. Especially for CAD designers, who often have complex and detail-oriented tasks to complete each day, being efficient and effective is important. Here are a five tips to maximize your productivity:
- Plan Ahead — Dedicating five minutes every evening to thinking about the next day can help you accomplish significantly more. It’s as simple as creating a to-do list for prioritizing the most important design tasks that you want to accomplish tomorrow. When you enter the office the next day, you can start working right away with efficiency. Without this structure to your day, it’s easy to get caught up in lower priority tasks until lunch. Instead, being intentional with your daily to-do list can help ensure you have time to tackle the important projects.
- Take a Break — Take the time to give yourself a five-minute break in between projects or whenever you feel mentally fatigued. Instead of using those minutes to check social media, use the time wisely to come back to work feeling refreshed and energized. Take a short walk, get up from your chair to stretch, or grab a quick snack. Many hard-working designers like to power through the day without any breaks, however this can actually decrease productivity. Especially with highly complex designs, taking a break allows you to refocus with a clear mind, increasing productivity for the rest of the day.
- Remove Distractions — While taking breaks is good for productivity, unplanned distractions can severely reduce efficiency. When you walk into the office in the morning, take a couple minutes to turn off notifications on ALL your devices. You may think that it will only take a few seconds to check your Facebook notifications, your personal email, or text messages, however those distractions and notifications make it harder to focus on the task at hand. People typically end up spending more time getting back into their projects or work after being distracted by a quick check of notifications.
- Stop Multitasking — Multitasking at work is a recent trend that many people now think is an important skill for increasing productivity. However, the opposite is actually true, especially in CAD. Studies show that attempting to complete several tasks at once proves to be slower than doing them each individually. When you multitask, it’s easier to get distracted and slows your brain’s ability to accomplish projects. Instead, focus on one task at a time to help you focus and ensure top-quality work.
- Improve Your Skills — Take advantage of learning tools and resources to increase your productivity at work by improving your skills. Online learning platforms allow you to stay up to date with the latest capabilities and best practices without having to leave the office. Spending five minutes learning a timesaving function through a quick tutorial will immensely help your future productivity. For immediate benefit, use an on demand reference tool when you are stuck on a design challenge to get a quick answer so that you can get back to your project.
This guest expert article about becoming more productive as a CAD designer is from the experts at SolidProfessor. 3DEngr visitors can start with a SolidProfessor free membership.