Publish on: 20 Jun 2016
Boosting Enterprise Productivity
Increasing productivity, or doing more with the same amount of time and resources, is something all companies should be aspiring to. Businesses often get inundated with tasks because they try to balance delivering work along with their efforts to win more clients, which means that productivity needs to be as high as possible. But sometimes employees can find themselves feeling unmotivated, and as a result, unproductive. Being productive is a tricky concept; it is something that ultimately has to come from within a person. But do not despair; the good news is that managers do indeed have a part to play in enhancing employee productivity. Here are five ideas for motivating employees into working smarter.
1) Share the bigger picture
More often than not, employees can feel unproductive if they feel like they are just a number in a spreadsheet, rather than an important and valued member of a larger team. However, if you want people to be a part of a dream or vision, then it is important that they understand that vision and share it with you. It's good to give employees a bird's eye view of the business. There’s a famous story about a janitor at NASA, who when asked what his job was, replied: “It’s my job to help put a man on the moon.” Though his primary job was obviously to fix things and keep everything ticking over, he felt like a crucial part of a team that had one clear overriding goal.
2) Empower your team
Often people can feel unmotivated if they believe they are not making a valuable contribution to the company. Having tasks delegated is part of being an employee; everyone has to do it, but constantly being told what to do, while at the same time having no real responsibility, can really sap the motivation out of a person. A little employee empowerment and having small project that they can call their own can do wonders for motivating an employee to do their very best. Having complete control and responsibility over something, no matter how big or small, inspires people to ensure it is produced to the very highest standard.
3) Manage performance
Any processes that are in place can often be neglected or pushed back in favour of other tasks that appear more important at the time, which can result in conversations regarding performance never taking place. This can go two ways; either poor performance is not addressed, which can often result in resentment, or good performance isn’t rewarded which can also result in a buildup of bitterness. Giving members of the team something to aim for in their work, something that they can work and progress towards, can do wonders for their productivity. This is because their individual progression could involve accomplishing certain tasks or smoothing out processes, but also because it gives them a goal to reach.
4) Open lines of communication
Don’t be afraid to put questions out there, to give more information and also be as direct as possible. Often a dip in productivity can be a result of a member of a team not fully comprehending what they have to do. If employees feel like they can come with questions or issues, then their productivity is likely to increase.
5) Strive for employee engagement
And last, but certainly not least, is the rising importance of employee engagement. The way that businesses operate is changing fast. The good news is that increasing employee engagement is often considered to be easier where managers have more one-on-one contact on a more regular basis. Many managers may find that they are already doing this, just without having considered it to be “employee engagement”, which is a fantastic start.
As we’ve mentioned above, a lack of productivity can have very real effects on the future of the business, both in terms of motivation and profit. By choosing just a few of these tips to incorporate into your management style, and working at them regularly and consistently, the future will be brighter.