Interruptions are a normal part of work life
It's obvious that when you work without interruptions you would increase your own personal productivity, but it would be a short-term victory. If you spend a few minutes and help your colleague somehow, it will allow him or her to continue working productively rather than staying stuck on a problem, so the return on your small time investment becomes substantial. Whether you answer difficult questions, provide guidance, or point people in the right direction, your help can be a valuable service to your team and your company. That’s why the best way is to balance your "time for your own tasks" and "time for consulting" devoted to your team member’s questions.
Establish regular interruptions hours
If you suffer from unlimited and uncontrolled interruptions, the best solution is to organize them. When your team knows the exact hours they can talk to you, it will discipline your colleagues and will not undermine your productivity. Your employees will think twice before interrupting you and at least they will have time to prepare the right questions or describe the problem more precisely. Time limits will make the discussion more effective and purposeful.
- Start your scheduling software
- Create a reoccurrence task "Employee Consulting" (ex.: it should repeat once in 2 or 3 hours and last for 30 minutes)
- Now, if an employee wants to interrupt you, he can check if you are available now – set filter to see your tasks on today schedule.
- If you are not available, the employee will see when he can interrupt you