4 Types of People that Hinder Productivity


Productivity is something we all strive for. Whether at work or at home, we desire to be the best we can be, using the most of what we have in the most efficient way. Sometimes we do this very well, other days we fail miserably. Luckily for us, we get a new chance every day to be better. Here are 4 types of people to avoid being in an effort to becoming more productive and the best you can be.

The People Pleaser

We live in a people pleasing world. We say yes to things without thinking them through, to help others out or to lighten their load. Unfortunately, these things we have now added to our plates also add stress to our lives. They aren’t helping us or move us closer to our goals and keep us from our dreams. When we lie, and say we can or can’t take on something, when we intuitively know better, they compromise our focus, integrity and power. We have to stay focused on where we’re going. Continue moving in a direction that is on course for your talents, interests and strengths. Instead, offer to find someone else that could help or give them new ideas on how they could better achieve what it is they are trying to achieve.

The Perfectionist

Call what is done, done! There is probably a project that you are done working on, but haven’t “marked as complete” because you think you will have more time to work on it later. Odds are, you’ll never find that time. When you have put all you have into a project, and it is finished, let it be done. Find rest in your accomplishment and feel a sense of pride in your job well done. Dot the i’s, cross the t’s and call it a day. You did your best! When we are not able to truly finish a project or task, we hinder ourselves from moving on to other things that need our attention.

The Wisher

In the line at the coffee shop, on the subway, over dinner – these are the places where I hear people complaining the most. Typically they are complaining about things they are not willing to do anything about. Complaining, or wishing, that things were different is perhaps the greatest death to productivity of the worker, manager, entrepreneur or senior executive.

The Pareto Principle exists to remind us that approximately 80% of our results come from 20% of our assets. Study the 20% and identify what you could address that would have the biggest impact on your productivity and performance. That 20% focus, may just change 80% of how things are.

The Assumer

In a weird way, the educational system that most of us experienced actually set us up for failure during our first few years on the job. Students spend years working alone, doing homework at home, taking tests on their own and sitting quietly in a classroom as teachers lecture on about the topic of study. Then, immediately when they enter the workforce collaboration is expected. While I believe in the power of deep, integrative, developmental thinking on our own, I also know that people move further and faster when they work together. The moment I get the intuitive thought that I should “know better” or I should “already know how to do something”, that is always my cue to raise my hand and ask for help. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness, it is sign of strength. Be willing to send out a tweet or post a status updating asking for the help you need.

It is easy to fall in the trap of being the people pleasers, the perfectionist, the wishers and the assumers of the world. Next time you catch yourself sliding down that slippery slope, remember that you are only hurting yourself. Stay focused on your path, have pride in your work well done, take action and never be afraid to ask for help. Stay productive.

Jason W. Womack is the CEO of The Womack Company, an international training firm that helps busy professionals be more productive through coaching and consulting, co-founder of the Get Momentum Leadership Academy, author of Your Best Just Got Better (Wiley, 2012) and most recently the co-author with his wife, Jodi Womack, of Get Momentum: How To Start When You’re Stuck (Wiley, 2016). Since 2000, he has coached leaders across industries and trained them in the art of increasing their workplace productivity and achieving personal happiness.