We all aim to be our best at work for a host of reasons – be better at our job, get that promotion or even just finish the shift a little quicker.

Whatever the motivation behind being better at our job, there are some clear ways to achieve this.

Here are five to concentrate your efforts on.

Plan and prioritise

Even if you have the most repeatable daily schedule where you know exactly what you will have to do each day, you will still be more successful if you plan and prioritise your tasks.

We have a natural habit of doing the easy stuff first and leaving the harder stuff to later, by which time we are a little more tired and less motivated.

Consider doing the hard stuff first and you may find the day progresses quicker.

Avoid distractions and multi-tasking

There’s a misconception around that multi-tasking is a brilliant thing that we should all strive for but this often isn’t the case.

Sure, you have to multi-task when you are driving or texting and listening to music on the train to work but in many other situations, multi-tasking doesn’t work.

Often, rather than giving 50% of your attention to each task, you only give it around 20% and the rest is wasted.

The same thing applies to distractions – just because you can have your mobile phone in the office and check Facebook sometimes doesn’t mean you should.

Distractions take our attention away from the task at hand and you lose valuable time reacquainting yourself with it.

Set milestones and targets

Milestones and targets can be big, impressive things like getting that promotion within twelve months or moving up the pay grade in the next quarter.

But they can also be smaller things that motivate you on a daily level; get these done at least one day before the deadline, finish early on Friday because everything is done.

Simply listen

Listening is the most important communication skill and one we all need to work on.

To have a better idea of what we need to do in our daily work life, we can listen better.

Listening better results in fewer miscommunications, mistakes and better client satisfaction as well as happier managers.

Give yourself downtime

Being ‘busy’ is often seen as a badge of honour and while it can be a good thing, it is crucial that it is offset by periods of downtime where you relax, switch off and do something different.

Otherwise, you risk burnout and then all that target setting will go to waste due to an enforced period of rest.