1. Avoid open offices like the plague.
2. Actually, just stay at home.
We found that people working from home completed 13.5% more calls than the staff in the office did—meaning that Ctrip got almost an extra workday a week out of them. They also quit at half the rate of people in the office—way beyond what we anticipated. And predictably, at-home workers reported much higher job satisfaction.
3. Become actual friends with your colleagues.
In this extract from his book, Friedman writes:
Research suggests that workplace friendships yield more productive employees, and it's not just because friends are easier to work with. It's also because there is more on the line. Feeling a connection with colleagues can motivate employees to work harder for a simple reason. When colleagues are close, a poor effort means more than a dissatisfied customer or an unhappy manager. It means letting down your friends. The social pressure to do a good job can often serve as a stronger motivator than anything a boss can say.
People with close friends at work also tend to stick around at their company for longer too.
4. Stop moaning.
5. Crack a few jokes in meetings.
6. Let your mind wander.
In an extract from his book, Corballis discusses a study done on this very topic:
People were given the task of inventing unusual uses for familiar objects, a task commonly used as a measure of creativity. After working on this for a short time, most of them were given a break. During the break, some engaged in a task demanding of memory, some in an undemanding task, and some simply sat quietly without doing anything. When the creativity task resumed, those who performed the undemanding task performed best, probably because their minds wandered; other research has shown that undemanding tasks are most likely to induce mind-wandering, more likely even than doing nothing.
So if you need to solve a problem, stop stressing over it and do the dishes – then let your mind do the rest.
7. Take a proper break.
And stepping away from work for a while doesn't just make you feel better, it makes you work better too. According to this 2013 article from the New York Times:
In 2006, the accounting firm Ernst & Young did an internal study of its employees and found that for each additional 10 hours of vacation employees took, their year-end performance ratings from supervisors (on a scale of one to five) improved by 8 percent.
So what are you waiting for? ✈️🍹😎