Productivity at the workplace can be simply defined as the output of your employees over a given period of time. Pragmatically, it relates to the efficiency of your employees to accomplish the goals of the organization. You can easily calculate it by dividing the total output of the organization (in terms of goods or sales) by total input (in terms of labor hours and other resources used in the working process). And though one might overlook the importance of increasing the productivity of their employees, it is vital for helping your organization reduce costs and expand its operations to stand out in a competitive market.
The benefits of increased productivity at the workplace don’t just reflect in the successful achievement of your organizational goals but also result in a satisfied customer/investor relationship. So, how do you turn an average performer in your organization into a productive powerhouse?
Well, we’ve got it covered for you. Here are 5 things you can do to motivate your employees in order to boost their productivity:
1. Give your employees the right tools
Providing your employees with the right organizational tools and technologies is a great first step towards increasing their productivity. According to a new study by Oracle Corporation, only 44% of the employees reported that their company uses the latest updated technologies to help increase their efficiency. This suggests that more than half the employees felt that their organization did not provide them with the right tools and technologies to help them succeed.
As an employer, you can ensure that your company invests in the right tools and technologies to not just automate everyday work tasks, but also enable employees to save precious time so they can focus on increasing their efficiency.
2. Communicate goals and demands effectively
Every manager should be aware of the fact that an effective communication channel is key to a productive workforce. Communicating your expectations and delegating responsibility to your employees effectively does not just result in increased efficiency but also makes your employees feel more connected to the organization’s missions and goals.
But sometimes, technology isn’t as beneficial as we think it is. Especially when it comes to delegating and communication via emails. A McKinsey study found out that emails take up more than 28% of the employees’ time hence becoming the second most time-consuming task after their job-specific tasks. Maybe, instead of solely relying on technology for connecting, employers could look at adopting a more traditional form of communication that always seems to work – a face to face conversation! Conduct quick catch-up meetings, delegate tasks and interact meaningfully with your employees. This can not only build a more interpersonal relationship between the employer, the employees and the manager, but also efficiently help in settling matters that could end up taking hours of back and forth on emails.
3. Give your employees autonomy over their work
Robby Slaughter, a productivity expert once said “The best way to encourage productivity is to encourage individuals to take ownership of how they manage their own time and resources.” Employees need direction and motivation to achieve a specific task but spoon-feeding every detail of their task and micromanaging them results in making them more dependent on their managers or supervisors for every little decision. Scientific research also shows that believing they have autonomy over their own work motivates employees more than financial rewards.
Ron Ashkenas writes in the Harvard Business Review “At higher levels managers usually need to dial down their operational focus and learn how to be more strategic”, which tells us that leaders should learn to let go and allow their employees to take control of their tasks. Effective leaders are known to delegate specific roles and set realistic timelines for their employees and then encourage them to embrace whatever style of work they have to achieve their goals. Trusting your employees with their tasks and giving them the freedom to manage their time not only leads them to think independently and feel more in control of their jobs but also creates a more efficient and productive work environment.
4. Focus on employee satisfaction
A great way to increase the efficiency of your employees is to actually give them a reason to do so! And studies suggest that there is an uncompromised relationship between the efficiency of a worker to how satisfied they are in the workplace. Each employee should be recognized and incentivized for a job well done. And rewarding an employee should also be done keeping their nature and preference in mind. Someone might appreciate public recognition, while another might appreciate a simple and private ‘thank you!’ Establishing a well-thought employee recognition program will thus lead to increased efficiency in your organization.
5. Create a positive work culture
In a survey of business owners carried out by The Alternative Board (TAB), 86% of respondents say they believe company culture directly impacts productivity and thus proves to be one of the key factors to boost employee productivity. High demand in the coworking space industry can also be attributed to this factor, wherein the employees feel more closely knit in a community and thus attach more meaning to their work. And since a collaborative culture enhances productivity, one must seek to make their organization a more fun place to be!
In summary, employing the above techniques to increase the productivity of your employees can help your organization increase and harness the capacity of its human resources to the fullest, which in turn forms the basis of a successful organization. The last thing to keep in mind as you try to implement these changes is to keep the well-being of your employees in mind because fostering a healthy work environment will result in a highly productive workplace!