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Reclaim your productivity with Pomodoro

by lawrence o'Shea / wednesday 13th September 2017

Reclaim your productivity with pomodoro

Businesses, governments and economists alike have been debating the cause of the UK’s ‘productivity crisis’ for over a decade.
With productivity in the UK languishing 30% lower than the USA and 35% lower than Germany – it’s a slide which cannot be ignored. Whilst the brain-boxes tackle the issue from in front of their whiteboards, here’s a not-so-secret technique which will revolutionise the way you work - whether you work in recruitment or in any other industry.
You’ll get more done in less time – all thanks to a tomato.

The Pomodoro

Developed in the late 1980’s by Francesco Cirillo, the Pomodoro Technique is a simple and powerful time management technique. Using a timer, the user breaks down their work into 25-minute segments. After each segment is completed, the user takes a short break. After four cycles, the user takes a long break. Cirillo used a tomato-shaped egg timer as a university student, and Pomodoro is Italian for… tomato!


hour and output per worker, UK

Output per hour and output per worker, UK – ONS


The Theory

  1. Decide on the task to be done.
  2. Set the Pomodoro timer (traditionally to 25 minutes).
  3. Work on the task until the timer rings.
  4. After the timer rings, put a checkmark on a piece of paper.
  5. If you have fewer than four checkmarks, take a short break (3–5 minutes), then go to step 2.
  6. After four Pomodoros, take a longer break (15–30 minutes), reset your checkmark count to zero, then go to step 1.

In Practice

  • Use a tomato-shaped egg timer – obviously!
  • Use the timer on your mobile phone
  • Download an app to your computer or phone (plenty are available)

Practically, the Pomodoro Technique requires a degree of self-discipline. You’ll need to hold yourself to remaining undisturbed and focussed throughout each segment of time.

To be true to the technique, you should discount every segment in which you’re disturbed. It’s a tough ask, though it is amazing what you can achieve when holding yourself to it.

When working on a Pomodoro segment, you are alone with the task in hand.

How it helps recruiters

As recruiters, deciding how to allocate our time is essencial. We need to ace time management to make sure we spend the right amount of time speaking to clients, candidates and focussing on business development.

The elementary condition of any time management technique involves breaking your day into 'chunks' or 'segments'.

Pomodoro has this condition, and it'll help you capitalise on making the most of your time and free you up to either take a well earned break - or crack on with some more lead generation!

Finally, some apps which may help

Tomato One - Free and functional

Tomato One is a simple application for increasing personal productivity. Work for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minute break and repeat.

This application has all the basics and nothing else:

- Short & long focus sessions
- Breaks
- Charts with 2 weeks history
- Configuration for hiding dock icon, interrupting user and showing timer in the menubar
- AppleScript support. Commands are "start", "stop" and "start break".

Find it on the App Store

Pomodoro Keeper - A must for iPhone users

Focus Keeper helps you keep your productivity high avoiding burnout using the timer. Work with time. Not against it!

Here is what this app offers:
• Simple, beautiful and intuitive interface. 
• Customize focus sessions, goals, colors and sounds. 
• Track your productivity with insightful charts.
• Universal(iPhone/iPad) app with iCloud support. 

Find it on the App Store

MarinaraTimer.com - A free web-based solution

Give it a try here

Let us know if this technique helps you - or if you have a different technique which works for you!


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