This mechanic within a game is more one that the player can choose to do. It is where the player works as efficiently as possible so that they can do the most amount of missions/quests in the shortest amount of time.
A good example of when players use this mechanic is in Skyrim. The player accepts a bunch of quests from a town and then heads off to do them. They don’t do each individual quest one at a time but use the productivity mechanic to do all the quests that are close to each other before heading back to hand them in. This way it allows them to accomplish more tasks in a shorter amount of time as they don’t have to spend time take triple the amount of trips back and forth.
Another good example is in the flight mini games in Grand Theft Auto V. The players must compete against each other and collect as many checkpoints as possible. So that the players are efficient and as productive as possible they try to collect the furthest away checkpoints first so that they can easily acquire the rest of them.