How to Stay Productive during the month of Ramadan?
“Self-management is vital during the period of fasting. Utilize the early hours of the day wisely and get the most important tasks and meetings done during these hours”, says Vahid Aghania, our PMCC CORPORATION Project Manager based in Palembang, Indonesia and managing systems engineering for the current LRT Palembang project.
Our tips for amplifying your productivity during the holy month of Ramadan:
1. Plan your Tasks and Time
Create a personal action list. “Many times, I can see procrastination and delay of open issues as well as lacking risk mitigation measures during the month of fasting. This has a negative impact on the project. This problem is caused by the failure to record and monitor issues in an action list.” –Peter Wyss, Managing Director of PMCC.
Focus some of your time on in-house tasks such as planning, procurement, design and drawing. These tasks can be easily overlooked in the chaos of the usual daily commitments throughout the year.
2. Go Digital!
There is an abundance of ingenious apps to assist you daily. Advocate the use of these apps and use them to set meetings with your clients and team efficiently. Utilize Skype for long distance communication to save time. Take notes on the go with Evernote to make sure you don’t lose or forget important information. At PMCC, we work very closely with technology and enhance our productivity with the help of the Microsoft Office 365 platform. Consider doing this yourself.
3. Be Flexible
With rapid energy depletion while fasting, do not be disheartened. Pick up where you left off when your energy levels are restored after breaking your fast during ‘buka puasa’.
You should also communicate with your stakeholders and employers to reschedule your working hours to better suit your energy levels. Do this to ensure sufficient productivity and timely hand-overs by the initially agreed deadlines.
4. Slow Down and Recalibrate
When the opportunity presents itself, take some time to reassess your project’s requirements. Take this down time to think and recalibrate ideas and pending actions that may be affected due to daily commitments.
Keep in mind that construction work rates may slow down if your construction workers consist of mostly fasting Muslims. Do not see this as a liability, because if used correctly, this down time can prove to be quite helpful. You can use this ‘non-active’ time to find more efficient practices on the project site. For instance, you can communicate with your team as well as your construction workers, to find alternative ways to use shorter working hours more efficiently.
5. Be Creative with your Approach and Methods.
This point is strongly linked with the ones mentioned above. With vast creativity, you can find ways to remain productive even when project progress is threatened. Find new ways and incentives to motivate your team. Arrange ‘buka puasa’ sessions with your team to strengthen your relationship and show your sensitivity to everyone’s culture. Use this time to prevent “deadline panics” and conflicts by listening to everyone’s concerns and coming up with creative compromises for any issues that bubble up during the month of fasting.
A study by Oxford Strategic Consulting offered this opinion,
“Flexibility is key: team building exercises, meetings and brainstorming workshops can take place around iftar (the breaking of fast) as well as other social events, while less essential tasks can be done remotely from home. Breaking the monotony of routine helps formulate new ideas within an organization and also builds stronger bonds between employees.”
6. Health is Wealth
It is very crucial to keep your health in check during the Holy Month of Ramadan to ensure that you get the most nutrients needed by the body. WFP Egypt-based nutritionists Dr. Alia Hafiz, Michele Doura and Ayan Barre shared some tips to help you stay fit and healthy during the month of Ramadan. A detailed read can be read at World Food Program
Just to offer a summary:
- Never Skip Suhour or the last meal before the start of the fast.
- Aim to eat at least 7 servings of fruit and vegetables every day
- Cut down on sugary and processed foods
- Break your fast slowly and don’t over indulge
- Make soups a regular item on your Iftar or breaking of the fast meals
- Avoid caffeinated and carbonated drinks
- Avoid deep fried food
- Avoid working out during fasting hours
- Adapt fasting to your physical condition