How To Multitask Effectively

No matter what type of job you have these days, you’ll be required to multi-task at some point. Although some medical studies have shed light on the negatives involving multitasking, most companies expect you to handle multiple priorities. You probably do so without even thinking about it. During job interviews, many employers also want to know if you can successfully multitask, so it’s important to know how you have handled multiple tasks in the past.

The Double-Edged Sword

Technology is a double-edged sword when it comes to multitasking. It is now the norm to constantly check your smartphone and email while working on other tasks, even to the point of losing overall focus and effectiveness. If you have a position that requires intense concentration while also involving frequent interaction with others, multitasking may be quite challenging. You have to manage your workload differently. To multitask efficiently in such situations, you must smoothly move your concentration from one activity to the next. To do so, prioritize tasks and address the most important needs first.

Know When to Say “No”

It’s also important to know when not to multitask. Be aware of such situations while interviewing and tailor your responses accordingly. Before interviewing for a position that requires considerable multitasking skills, take time to list situations where you have had to multitask, either in previous jobs or as part of your coursework if you have recently graduated from college. One you have several examples that you can elaborate, you’ll be prepared to show just how well you will be able to fit into an organization.

Examples of effective multitasking include:

  • Answering phones while greeting visitors
  • Designing company logos while updating those from other businesses
  • Dealing with a verbally abuse passenger while driving a bus, taxi, etc.
  • Fielding calls from stressed investors while managing their portfolios
  • Managing social media accounts while working on other online marketing tasks
  • Prioritizing customer service complaints
  • Processing insurance paperwork while setting appointments in a medical or dental office
  • Estimating construction work while scheduling subcontractors

Are you interested in learning more about how to manage your office as well as your office life? Check out the Office Innovations blog where we publish tips on employee productivity as well as other useful material.

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