Advertising
Advertising

11 Things You Can Do To Increase Employee Productivity

11 Things You Can Do To Increase Employee Productivity

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Americans spend 8.8 hours a day in the workplace.[1] That is even more than the 7.7 hours we spend on sleeping.

The fact is we now spend more time with our co-workers than we do with our family. Because we spend so much time with co-workers, they have the opportunity to affect our mood on a daily basis.

A motivated employee creates a positive environment in the workplace while an unmotivated employee is destructive and demoralizing.

What is a leader suppose to do when you encounter an unproductive employee? Change their attitude immediately!

Here are some effective ways to help you motivate an employee and boost employee productivity:

1. Create a family like atmosphere

We are not talking about treating an employee the same way you would treat your mother or your brother. Think more along the lines of a cousin or a nephew.

We all have extended family members that we cannot stand but that does not mean we don’t have their best interest in mind always.

We can talk bad about family members but we will never stand for other people talking negatively about them. The same should apply to your employees.

Advertising

Make sure your employees know that regardless of how you feel about them that you always have their backs and are willing to go to war for them.

If you want an invincible team, make them feel safe first.

2. Know your employees’ background

Our motivation for work is a huge factor on how we will perform in the work place. A college student working in the daytime and going to school at night has a different motivation for working than that of a single mother having to feed two kids.

Understanding your employees’ motivation will allow you to structure a support system that is both beneficial and motivating for each employee.

3. Train, train and retrain

There is nothing worse than not knowing what to do. You feel lost, confuse, and frustrated all at the same time.

Everyone hates not knowing what to do. An employee is more likely to be productive when they understand what exactly is expected from them and they are given the training to perform such a task.

Training gives confidence and confidence leads to employees that are productive.

4. Small incentives will go a long way

You will be surprised at how powerful a $10 gift card can be in the work place. It has nothing to do with the money or the monetary value but more on that fact that their is a goal that all employees are trying to reach.

Advertising

5. Make your word the final say

Opinions and suggestions are great but ultimately the final say should always come from their superiors.

Valuing the opinions and listening to the suggestions of employees before making a decision will show them that they are part of a team and will give them a sense of contribution to the company.

The more they feel that their voice is being heard, the more they will contribute to the cause of a company.

6. Treat employees as people

Employees have lives outside of the workplace and our lives outside of the workplace should always take precedence over work.

That single mother you employ may not always have a babysitter lined up. The college student may have a final that he must complete to graduate.

Be respectful and understanding when life happens to your employees and you will have an appreciative and productive worker.

7. Give them the right equipment

Make sure that the everyday equipment in the office works! There is nothing worse than having an employee say that they couldn’t complete their daily tasks because “the computer was down.”

Do not give them any excuses to slack off.

Advertising

8. Answer questions

Just like a man would rather be lost than ask for advice, an employee may feel it is better to do something wrong than to ask for how to do something right!

For various reasons such as being scared or not wanting to show a lack of specific knowledge to what is expected from them (see number 3), an employee will not move.

You are the person in charge for a reason. Hammer the point home that asking questions is a good thing.

Answering questions clearly and in a timely manner will keep the productivity going.

9. Celebrate victories no matter how small

When an employee sees that every positive contribution to the team is acknowledged, he or she knows that their actions count and that what they do is really making a difference.

If you want to learn more about how to celebrate small wins, this guide can help you:

How To Celebrate Small Wins To Achieve Big Goals

10. Be a role model

When people see the boss working, they will also work.

Advertising

When they see the boss slack off, they will do the same.

A workforce will always mirror their immediate supervisors.

11. Not one employee is more valuable than others

There is nothing worse in the work force than seeing employees not being treated as equals.

We all have experienced having a peer who was viewed as the “favorite.” We also remember how discouraging and resentful that made us.

If you are a boss and you have favorites, you run the wrist of having a split workforce.

In a time when competition for work is at its highest, we must all remember that we are being watched. That includes bosses, managers and supervisors.

You were placed in charge for a reason. Use employees properly and your workload will be that much easier.

“Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.” -Anne M. Mulcahy, Former CEO of Xerox Corporation

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

[1] Bureau of Labor Statistics: American Time Use Survey

More by this author

11 Things You Can Do To Increase Employee Productivity 20 Words That Are Now Defined Differently Because You Are Older

Trending in Work

1 7 Strategies to Keep Employee Motivation High 2 How to Become Smarter: 21 Things You Can Do Daily 3 7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success 4 The Savvy Employees Guide to Asking for a Raise 5 How to Master the Art of Stress Free Work

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on December 10, 2019

7 Strategies to Keep Employee Motivation High

7 Strategies to Keep Employee Motivation High

Highly motivated employees are essential to the success of any business. Most people spend a third of their lives at work.[1] That’s a significant amount of time away from home, apart from the people who make us happy and the things we love to do. So keeping employee motivation high is essential for creating an office environment that gets the best out of our people.

But do you know what motivates your people?

It’s simple:

  • Is their work stimulating?
  • Does it challenge them?
  • Is there room to grow, a promotion perhaps?
  • Do you encourage creativity?
  • Can they speak openly and honestly with you?
  • Do you praise them?
  • Do you trust your staff to take ownership of their work?
  • Do they feel safe in their work environment?
  • And more importantly, do you pay them properly?

Every one of these factors contributes to the general happiness of your employees. It’s what motivates them to come into the office each day and work hard, hit goals, and get results.

In contrast, an unmotivated employee is typically unhappy. They take more sick days, they’re not invested in seeing your business succeed, and they’re always on the lookout for something better.

Stats show that 81 percent of employees would consider leaving their jobs today if the right opportunity presented itself.[2] So it’s up to you to set aside time and energy to create a work environment that benefits every one of your employees.

These seven strategies will help you motivate your people to consistently deliver quality work and, more importantly, to stick around for the long term.

1. Be Someone They Can Rely On

You rely on your people to turn up to work each day, to come to you when they have a problem they can’t solve, to be honest, and to always engage professionally with customers.

Advertising

But this is not a one-way street. You, too, need to be someone your team can rely on. They trust you to have their backs when a client is unreasonable, to know that the decisions they make are in your best interest, and to make good on your promises.

If you say you’ll attend an important meeting, be there. If your company makes a profit and you’ve said you’ll pay a bonus, pay it. The goodwill of your people is something you never want to test, let alone lose.

Be reliable; it’s astounding how much this motivates your people.

2. Create an Awesome Company Culture

There’s no denying that company culture trickles down from the top. Your leadership and attitude massively influences the attitudes, work ethic, and happiness of your staff. If you’re always stressed-out, overly demanding, and unreasonable, it’ll create tension in your office which will adversely affect your employees’ motivation levels.

In fact, the HAYS “US What People Want Survey” found that 47 percent of staff who are actively looking for a new job, pinpoint company culture as the driving force behind their reason to leave.

So if you have high staff turnover, you need to determine whether your company culture might be the motivating factor behind your churn rate.

Here are four ways to build a culture that keeps your employees highly motivated.

  • Be conscious of the image you present. Your body language and attitude can positively or negatively impact your employees. So come to work energized. Be optimistic, friendly, and engaging—this enthusiasm will spill over to your people and motivate them to be more productive and efficient.
  • Appreciate your people and be reasonable. Celebrate your team’s achievements. If they’re doing a good job, tell them. Encourage them to challenge themselves and try new things. And reward when deserved. If they’re struggling, help them. Work together to find solutions and be a sounding board for their ideas.
  • Be flexible. Give your people opportunities to work remotely—this is highly motivating to staff, particularly millennials. They don’t want to be battling traffic each day on their way to work. They don’t want to miss their kids’ baseball games or ballet rehearsals. Stats show that companies that offer flextime and the ability to work from home or a coffee shop have happier and more productive employees.
  • Create employee-friendly work environments. These are spaces that inspire and ignite the imagination. Have you ever been to Google’s offices? No headquarter is the same. From indoor slides and food trucks, to hammocks, and funky work pods on the wall, gaming rooms, and tranquil interior gardens, there’s something for everyone. It’s a space where people want to be, catering to their need for creativity, quiet, or team building; you name it.

So take a look at your company culture and ask yourself, Is my business an attractive workplace for talented professionals? Does it inspire commitment and motivate my people? What could I do to improve my company culture?

Advertising

3. Touch Base with Your Team Weekly

Make time for your people, whether you run a remote business or work in an office, set aside time each week to talk to your people one-on-one. It’s non-negotiable.

When there’s an open line of communication between staff members, work gets done. Don’t believe me? A study by Gallup found that 26 percent of employees said feedback from their leaders helps them to do a better job.[3]

Your people want to feel trusted. They want to take ownership of their work, but they also need to know that when they have a question, they can reach out and get answers. If you’re unwilling to make yourself available, your team will quickly become unmotivated, work will stagnate, and your business will stop growing.

So block off time on your calendar each week to touch base with your people, even if only to let them know that what they’re working on matters.

4. Give Them the Tools They Need to Do Their Jobs Well

Imagine trying to run your business without electricity. How would you contact your clients? What would happen when your phone or computer battery died?

Technology is super critical to the success of your businesses. It allows you to work more efficiently, to be more productive, and to handle matters on-the-go. That’s why you need to give your people tools that will make their jobs easier.

Make sure their equipment is in good working condition. There’s nothing more frustrating than a laptop that takes ages to boot up. It’s got to go. Replace outdated software with new software. Don’t make your designer work in Coreldraw; give them access to the most up-to-date version of Adobe Creative Suite. Take it a step further and buy them a subscription to Shutterstock or Getty Images.

Make working for you a pleasure, not a pain; and watch your employees’ motivation levels rise.

Advertising

5. Provide Opportunities to Learn and Upskill

Would you believe me if I told you that 33 percent of people cite boredom and a need for new challenges as the top reason for leaving their job?[4] If you want to retain your talent, you need to upskill.

Thanks to technology, we live in a rapidly evolving world that demands we change with it. A copywriter is no longer just a writer; they now need to be experts in SEO, Google Adwords, CRMs, and so much more.

A pastry chef needs to be a food stylist, photographer, and social media manager. An entrepreneur needs to be a marketer—or at least take ownership of the marketing message for their business—if they hope to scale.

Technology makes all of this possible. No matter your location, your people can continuously expand their knowledge and gain new skill sets—something that’s highly motivating to employees. They want to know that there are opportunities to grow and develop themselves.

If you won’t invest in your people, then your business becomes just another job to tide them over until they find where they truly belong. So be the company that sees value in developing its people.

6. Monitor Their Workload

Overworked employees tend to be unproductive and unhappy. Your people cannot be at full capacity every day, month to month. Something’s got to give. They’ll become deflated and their work will eventually suffer, which will negatively impact your business.

What I like to do is implement a traffic light system. It helps me to keep a finger on the pulse of my business. So there’s red, yellow, and green:

  • Red means they’re fully loaded.
  • Yellow means they’re busy, but they can potentially take on more.
  • Green means they haven’t got enough to do.

I use this traffic light system because I don’t want my team members to be stressed out of their brains all the time. If they are, they won’t make good decisions and they won’t do good work.

Advertising

If my people are regularly overloaded, I have things to think about. Perhaps I need to hire a new person to help ease the load or take a closer look at what projects are good to go, and which can take a back seat.

And this is why #3 is essential. If I’m regularly engaging with my people, I’ll know that while they’re coping with their workload, it is impacting their performance and health, and I’ll take action.

7. Don’t Mess Around with Your Employees’ Pay

Never mess around with your people’s salary. As a business owner or high-level manager, it’s easy to forget that most people live from paycheck to paycheck. Delayed compensation can mean a missed bill payment, which could result in costly penalties they can’t afford or hits to their credit score.

So it’s your job to ensure that you pay your people on time.

The Bottom Line

A motivated team is an asset to any business. These people never give up. They get excited about coming to work each day and can’t wait to test a new theory or tackle a particularly tricky challenge. They’re proud of the work they do. And more importantly, they have no reason to leave.

Wouldn’t you rather be part of their success story than the business that drove them away?

More to Motivate Your Team

Featured photo credit: Emma Dau via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next