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Ramazan usually goes hand in hand with a slight drop in profits, an increase in absenteeism and an overall lack of focus as far as employees are concerned. In fact, according to a research study carried out by Cairo’s Institute of Social Sciences of the Arab World, productivity in the workplace decreases by 78% in Muslim countries during Ramazan.

Here are some ways you can ensure that you remain focused during Ramazan:

  • Focus on Quality and not Quantity
    Occupational health therapists say that it is actually the quality of work that is the key to productivity, as opposed to the quantity. So try to structure your day to get the most done during your productive hours and you will be able to produce a full day’s work in half the time.
  • Schedule Your Priorities
    The average person wastes three out of eight hours in useless activities and uses inefficient methods in the other five. Optimise your efforts and try to concentrate most of your time and energy on high payoff tasks.
  • Use Your Biological Clock Wisely
    Don’t try to tick when your body wants to tock. Your productive output fluctuates throughout the workday due to your internal biological clock; energy levels will be highest in the early morning hours while productivity is typically low between 12 pm and four pm. So plan your work days to tackle cognitive tasks in the morning when your brain is alert, and routine work in the afternoons when lethargy is bound to set in.
  • Take Advantage of the Opportunities
    Waking up earlier than usual for sehri provides you with several productive hours to work when your mind and body are fresh and alert. Additionally, other distractions in the workplace are minimised. For instance, time spent loitering over the morning tea/coffee(s) and the long lunch break are eliminated, affording you additional time in which to focus on the work at hand.

— Fauzia Kerai Khan
The writer is Chief Consultant, i&b Consulting, Training, eLearning. fauzia@iandbconsulting.com

First published in the Careers Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on July 31, 2011.