Productivity is a vital element to keeping a company profitable and thriving. When things are going well, you probably aren’t thinking much about it. When numbers are down though, it can feel like nothing will change employee productivity on a downward slope. Thankfully, there are strategies – several, in fact – one can use to increase productivity of employees. Here’s where to start.
1. Less micro-managing
Sometimes the best way to encourage higher productivity is to give individuals some independence. Let them take ownership of their time and resources, and how to manage them. If you are always micro-managing employees, they’re not necessarily going to feel invested.
For some, this method to increase productivity of employees can seem counterintuitive. But in some cases, when you manage less, you do tend to get better results as multiple studies have shown us. In fact, employees are motivated more by autonomy than they are by financial rewards – something to think about.
2. Culture-based hiring
Hiring future employees should involve screening them for how well you think they’ll fit in within your workplace. Consider things like how a person will fit in socially, how they’ll represent your company, if they’re motivated, and if they’ll be energized to work there. By picking employees who suit your company culture, you’re empowering the team you already have with someone they’re more likely to trust and connect with.
3. Improve workplace conditions
Things like the color of the room, the quality of furniture, the temperature, and more can impact work performance. If you have the budget for it, you may want to add a fresh coat of paint, creating a friendlier workplace environment. If an employee dreads having to come to work, you need to change the dynamics and the workforce management strategy.
A small investment in rejuvenating the look can pay off big-time. You may also want to take a look at your company culture and see what you can change to make everything more conducive to productivity.
4. Examine process efficiency
Look around at your operations and see if there are areas you’re missing out on productivity because the process stinks, not the employees. When you change the structure of a task or project, or the way you do business, this alone can be enough to empower staff with clear responsibilities and tools to top productivity and performance goals.
5. Skills training
Training is one of the best ways on how to increase productivity of employees. If employees aren’t performing up to where you want them, they may need to be re-trained or trained on efficiency strategies. For new hires, you should re-examine what training they’re provided. Skills training is important although unnecessary training can be annoying.
With that said, if you feel it is necessary or would benefit the employee’s productivity or perspective, you may find skill training to be a nice way to get them excited about the job.
6. Equip them with the right tools and apps
The apps and tools we use at work play a huge role in overall performance and productivity. Consider implementing time and productivity apps that track different team’s activities while allowing them to assign projects and tasks to different team members.
Consider communication apps that allow for instant messaging between employees, file sharing, and more. Consider collaboration apps or project management tools that promote teamwork and which allow for easy fire sharing. This is all to streamline work and to get employees engaged with one another.
7. Reduce distractions
This can backfire on you if you don’t want it but restricting social media access and other distractions can help to keep employees focused on the job at hand. Encourage employees to turn off their phones but that said, if you’re going to do that, you want to ensure they receive adequate break time that allows them to check their phones and use social media. Any time spent at the desk or on the clock however should be focused strictly on productivity.
8. Delegating responsibility
If employees don’t know what is expected of their roles, they may falter in productivity and performance. Some employees may perform better with increased responsibility while others wouldn’t. If employee productivity has fallen behind, take an honest look around.
For qualified employees, they may benefit from a challenge. By delegating increased responsibility to those who’ve earned it, you may find that it benefits your company and provides the employee will more opportunity, direction, and achievement.
9. Focus on the future
Look to the future. Set clear, realistic goals for each employee with rewards clearly communicated. If an employee has incentive to stay on track, they’re all the more likely to accomplish a given set of tasks. Clarify expectations. Let them know, whatever help they need, they’re free to communicate it to you.
Two-way communication lets an employee feel valued. You may even find them bringing to you suggestions on how to increase efficiencies and workflow without you having to put in any more work. Focus on the future and goal achievement, and productivity is likely to increase immediately among employees.