The Coffey Blog

Have a Great Workday! Dealing with distractions at work

Posted on: Monday, July 20, 2015

The Coffey Blog is for healthcare marketers. You're our people—and we want you to gain valuable insights to help you reach your goals. But we know that true success comes from small daily victories—in the trenches.

Which is why we're here to say, "Have a Great Workday!" This new blog series will share our best tips for being productive—for getting your important work done. Subscribe to our blog by email so you don't miss future posts in the series, which will run through 2015. (See the orange box at the right.)

We started by asking a few of our industrious Coffey teammates this question:

What's your best tip for fighting distraction at work?

We hope their answers spark ideas or provide reminders that help you get your focus on. You need to find what works best for you, whether it's booking a meeting with yourself, chewing gum or listening to the sound of rain.

Clear your space, clear your mind
"For me, disorganization is a huge distraction. So I keep my workspace tidy and my to-do list and files organized."
—Cindy Ptacek, Print Planner

"I work on a lot of creative projects, and my mind can race with ideas. When I feel it spinning, I do a mental reboot. I stop, take a couple of deep breaths and ask myself: 'What needs to be done right now?' It helps me focus on my most critical task."
—Marjorie Reece, Lead Senior Editor

Book a meeting with yourself
"I schedule time on my calendar for important projects—and hold myself to it. I might even book a conference room to get the work done."
—Molly Weatherill-Tate, Director of Client Experience

Don't get derailed by email
"Staying in touch with email is an important part of my job. But nonurgent messages and alerts can also be really distracting. So when I have a difficult or involved task to do, I might sign out for a block of time—say an hour—so I can devote singular focus to it. The work goes faster, and I am able to give better attention to my email later."
—Becky Smith, Marketing Communications Manager  

"Here's a strategy I use: Only check email once an hour. Get 45 minutes of work done, then 15 minutes of email."
—Sherilee Coffey, Director of Creative Operations

Reach for headphones
"If I really need to stay focused, I listen to what I call 'pump-it-up workout music.' Very upbeat, jazzy stuff to get my mind in the mood to rock and roll on the tasks I have to get done."
—Ashley Akacich, Production Service Specialist

"My go-to for tuning out distractions in my office pod: Putting on headphones and chewing gum."
—Brian Novak, Assistant Editor

"If I'm having a hard time focusing, I like to listen to I actually love rain and it helps me focus on the task at hand."
—Jennifer Garza, Digital Specialist, GAIC

We love our lists!
We've got a lot of pointers on how to perfect and put your to-do list to work for you. So many that we're going to dive deeper into that productivity topic in our next "Have a Great Workday!" post. In fact, we're putting it on our list now.

Let Coffey help with your marketing to-dos

One common source of distraction at work is having too much to do and not enough time to do it. If that's what you're up against, we can help. Our healthcare marketing expertise and services can help you get more done—with results you can brag about. To get the conversation started, call us at 888.805.9101 or email us.