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Be Happier, Healthier and more Productive in 2015

Posted By APSO, Tuesday, 08 September 2015

Be Happier, Healthier and more Productive in 2015

Recruitment, they say, is one of the most stressful jobs. Follow these great tips to ensure that you’re happier, healthier and more productive in 2015.

See the glass as half full

It’s easy to get swept up in the negative but rather focus on the positives and practice an attitude of gratitude. A survey conducted by the University of California found that groups of people who kept a journal recording just 5 things they were grateful for each week felt better about themselves, were more optimistic, had fewer health issues and slept better.

Take the first step

Setting goals is only the beginning, taking action is critical for greater productivity and ultimately happiness. Create an action plan to assist you in achieving your goals. Ensure that you achieve at least one of your action steps per day and soon you’ll reach your milestone.

Losing track of time is not necessarily a bad thing

We are focussed on accounting for every minute and chastise ourselves for spending too long or becoming absorbed in an activity. However, it is clear that we tend to “lose track” when we’re doing something that we enjoy – whether it’s work-related or leisure. Studies have shown that individuals with high energy levels and who spend sufficient time doing things that energise them have higher self-esteem, achieve greater levels of engagement and are more likely to enjoy long-term happiness.

Exercise…preferably outdoors

We all know that exercise is not only essential for good health but for mental well-being and stress relief too. But did you know that exercising outdoors, in the fresh air, drastically increases one’s energy and enjoyment, not to mention plummets our stress levels and anxiety.

Laughter it seems, is the best medicine

15 minutes of laughter raises our pain threshold 10% because it releases endorphins, the body’s built-in stress and pain reliever. Laughter is also a good indication of socialisation, a necessity for human beings. We are 30 times more likely to laugh in a group than on our own.

Listen more

As recruiters we spend lots of time in interviews, hopefully listening more than talking. In this regard we are ahead of other professions who don’t necessarily derive the benefits. Cultivating good listening skills doesn’t only mean you’ll make stronger connections with people and establish greater rapport, it also improves your ability to block out distracting thoughts meaning you can absorb more information, increase your knowledge and demonstrate confidence.

Do something for someone else

Altruism, doing something for someone else without an expectation of anything returned, results in what’s known as “helper’s high” that actually triggers the part of our brain that is responsible for feeling of euphoria. People who engage in regular volunteer work experience better health and less depression.

Choose your company wisely

A study of 4000 people over 20 years revealed that happiness is a network phenomenon. People who are connected to a “happy network” were found to be more likely to be happy “years into the future”. Your happiness level is likely to be the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with…is it time to change company?

No matter which, if not all, of these tips you take up, taking action to consciously improve your environment will help you to reduce stress, improve health and happiness and ultimately make you that much more productive.


Tags:  apso  communication  employees  employer  health  plan  productivity  strategy  team 

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Take control of your desk now

Posted By APSO, Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Take control of your desk now

Recruitment can be a real rollercoaster especially as we juggle multiple clients, candidates and job orders. Whilst we cannot, as much as we’d like to, control our candidates or clients, we can control our desk to maintain productivity and reduce our stress.

1.       Set Clear Goals

You need to have a clear understanding of your targets and what activity is required to achieve them. Set yourself goals from big (annual) to small (this week) and you’ll be more likely to reach them. Write them down. Research shows that you’ve got more chance of achieving a goal if you’ve committed it to paper.


2.       Plan Ahead

Use resources, whichever works for you, to plan your activities and allocate time accordingly. Whether paper or electronic, a diary is a must for any recruiter. Remember that recruitment rarely sticks to a schedule so be sure to allocate time each day for those “unexpected” tasks, such as arranging an interview on behalf of a client.


3.       Stay Organised

Recruiters make money from information and it’s essential that we are able to quickly and easily access what we need. Keep your desk organised and invest in a simple filing system – whatever works best for you – so that you’re able to stay on top of the piles of paper.


4.       Take Action!

Procrastination is a recruiter’s worst enemy. We all have things we don’t like about the job – often cold calling or regretting candidates. Don’t delay, do the unpleasant things first as we generally have more energy in the morning and it’s great to cross off the list the tasks we’ve been dreading.


5.       Focus

Commit to a single task, be fully engaged and you’ll achieve more. If you’ve got a list of cold calls to make, advise your colleagues that you’re not to be disturbed and put your head down and get it done.


6.       Stop Multi-tasking

This seems a contradiction because recruitment is all about multi-tasking. However, to maximise productivity, group similar tasks and you’ll find that you will get more done. By way of example, set aside time to do all of your telephonic references. By getting into the groove and doing several in a row you’ll probably find that you’ll get a better quality of reference and also a few more completed in a shorter space of time.


7.       Switch off your Email.

If you’ve still got the notification for new emails switched on, turn it off now! Recruiters get literally hundreds of emails and every time it pings or flashes on screen you’re likely to stop what you’re doing to address the mail. Rather schedule time, even if it’s every 90 minutes, to consciously open your Inbox and deal with emails.



8.       Prioritise.

Not everything urgent is important. Take a few minutes at the end of each day to draw up your To Do List and prioritise the items. Begin tomorrow with the most important items so that you’ve at least achieved these before the “wheels fall-off”


9.       Take care of yourself

Be sure to make time for lunch, eating healthy food to refuel your body and mind, and get in some exercise. Get in the recommended sleep and if possible, rise an hour earlier. It’s amazing how much more can be achieved in the morning, especially if you can get to the office before the phones start ringing.


10.   Use your Time wisely

Take care to use your time wisely. Be punctual, not only does it reduce stress associated with running late, but it means that your schedule for the day remains intact. One late meeting has a domino effect. If you must attend meetings, ask for an agenda and stick to it. If your team is notorious for having meetings that end up in talk-shops, why not institute a Standing rule. Meetings that are conducted standing will most often finish quickly as there is no room for getting comfy. 

Tags:  achieve  apso  goal setting  goals  multi-tasking  orgnise  prioritise  strategy  take action  time management 

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