Long days getting you down? Work Smarter!

By Posted on : 26 Mar 2018 0 Comments

With budgets constantly tightening, less resources and a significant increase in workloads, are those 12-hour days really paying off?

The move to longer work days can often come from higher up – however studies suggest that our brains can only take so much overworking before long term side effects such as decline in memory and thinking skills are triggered.

Although there are the obvious exceptions to doing longer days such as when deadlines are approaching, you are covering for a colleague or have just been procrastinating that little bit too long. However for both your own benefit and the company’s, in the long run it is often a good idea to look after yourself and avoid those long hours.

A few handy tips that I have found to manage your workload are:

  • Prioritise – Before your day begins, (I like to do it the night before) write a list of everything you need to achieve. This allows you to visualise what you need to do and experience the satisfaction of ticking something off once you have completed something.
  • Be clear with your manager – Make sure that your manager understands your workload and be honest if you are struggling. Your manager doesn’t want to see you fail, so if you’re upfront and clear about what you can manage, they will often understand your predicament.
  • Set expectations – When dealing with clients in particular, be sure to set expectations with them. Make sure they are realistic; otherwise you will be pulling those all-nighters!
  • Take time for you – even though working through a break may be appealing, often if you can get out of the office for just 20-30 minutes, you will find it can significantly improves the rest of your day. My manager encourages us to do so, particularly if it has been a bad day – maybe go for a run, hit the gym or simply just take a walk around the block to refocus and clear your mind.
  • Don’t procrastinate – This has to be one of the most common reasons for delay in producing work on time. Although I find it can be very easily avoided, it tends to be the hardest to get a handle of. From looking at that news page for an extra 20 minutes, to accidentally slipping onto The Iconic, I can imagine most of us are guilty of this! Try allowing yourself a certain block period of 20 minutes before or after work where you can take time to focus on these and not take away from your priority list.
  • Switch off – with our phones and laptops constantly being with us, it is hard to not slip a look at that report or reply to that client email, but you need to make sure that you aren’t online 24/7. This can be incredibly draining and will most definitely lead to an early burn out!


By no means are these the only ways in which you can take your 12 hour day to an 8 hour day, but they are some tips I’ve learnt along the way and hopefully they can help you manage that work/life balance a bit better!


For a confidential discussion, please contact me on +61 410 001 819 or amacpherson@parityconsulting.com.au. Be sure to be following Parity Consulting on LinkedIn to hear about our exciting events for 2018!