Eliminate waste from your work

Hope you guys have started tracking your time now or may have been doing it already. If not then why not give a shot and try TmTask. Its free!

Tracking your time is effective but have you ever thought of how to use your tracked time to improve your productivity? Before we get into the topic of waste reduction, let me define the value added and non-value added work:

  • Value-added work is the work that is actually valuable and results in satisfying outcomes. The work that increases productivity and effectiveness in your work. 
  • Non-value added work, also called waste, refers to work that doesn’t add value to or is unnecessary add on for the overall work. 

As we now know the differences between the value added and non-value added work, let me share with you a simple way to identify unseen wastes in our daily life and how we can eliminate or reduce them by following some easy steps.

Take a good sample of day-to-day activities you track everyday like #checking emails, #development, #meeting, #commute, etc. You can see that there are some activities where you spend longer than expected and didn’t know because you never tracked them before. You can find this out by simply calculating mean (average) time of these activities and variance between each activity.  I will walk you though the advanced level of differentiating value adds vs non-value adds to reduce waste but lets try the basic one first.

Try these 4 simple lean tricks and see your growth instantly:

eliminate waste


1) Group your tasks to work in batches

#Checking email: Instead of checking your emails more frequently every 5-10 min, try to check them in batches, more like having a fixed time to do it. Check it every 2 hr to quickly glance your emails and spend no more than 10 min each time you check your emails. Not every email is a critical one.

2) Prioritize in advance

#Meeting: Before joining all the meetings, prioritize your work in advance to attend the ones that have a specific agenda, goals and action items. Again, not every meeting needs your active involvement.

3) Plan your work

#Watch-TV: This is the best pass time of everyone. Who doesn’t like watching TV but don’t make it your daily routine to watch any shows even if you aren’t interested. We often watch TV mindlessly.  Plan your shows in advance and watch them accordingly.

4) Test one change for goodness 

#Commute: Commuting back and forth from work can be tiresome if you have to face traffic very often. If traffic is an issue and your manager allows, try to test one change by working at odd hours to avoid traffic or request to work from home. Beating rush hour traffic will ensure that you are working efficiently while keeping your spirits high!

Try them out to eliminate waste from your work.