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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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Last Updated on March 31, 2020

How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

Knowledge is essential to become successful in life, your career and your business. Without learning new concepts and becoming proficient in our craft, we cannot excel in our chosen careers or archive knowledge to pass down to the next generation.

But content comes in various forms, and because how we learn influences how much we know, we need to talk about learning styles. This article will focus on how to utilize visual learning to boost your career or business.

The Importance of Knowing Your Learning Style

Knowing your learning style enables you to process new information to the best of your ability. Not only does it reduce your learning curve, you’re able to communicate these same concepts to others effectively.

But it all starts when you’re able to first identify the best way you learn.

As a college student, I soon figured out that taking online courses without visual aids or having an instructor in front of me led to poor retention of concepts.

Sure, I got good grades and performed excellently in my online exams. However. I discovered that I couldn’t maintain this performance level because I forgot 80 percent of the course content by the end of the semester.

There are several types of learning styles known to mankind. To give an idea of how visual learning stacks up against other learning styles, here’s a brief mention of some of the different types of learning styles we have.

The four most popular types of learning styles are:

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  • Visual learning style (what this article talks about).
  • Aural or auditory learning style (learning by listening to information presented).
  • Verbal or linguistic learning style (learning that involves speech and writing).
  • Tactile learning style (learning by touching and doing)

But for the purposes of this article, we will be focusing on using visual learning to boost your career or business.

How to Know If You’re a Visual Learner?

When it comes to boosting your career, business (or education), a visual learner is one who would most definitely choose shapes, images, symbols, or reading over auditory messages.

I’m talking about preferring to read an actual map when navigating to a new place over listening to verbal directions. I’m talking about discovering that you actually have trouble remembering what your manager said at the meeting because there were no graphs or illustrations to support the points raised.

Most people who struggle with learning probably aren’t leveraging their best learning styles. The earlier you identify how your learning style can boost your success, the less struggle you will encounter with processing new information throughout your career.

However, visual learning in particular CAN 10x your career or business whether it is your preferred learning style or not. And here’s why:

Several studies have arrived at the conclusion that the brain retains more information with the help of visual aids. In other words, images are directly processed by our long-term memory which helps us store information for longer periods of time.[1]

While some lessons can be performed orally, several concepts can only make sense if you have an image with an explanation of sequences (i.e learning about the human DNA).

Visual learning does use a different part of the brain and visual cues are processed by the part of the brain known as the occipital lobe.

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By engaging more parts of the brain during learning, you’re able to have a fuller understanding of concepts and facilitate better interaction with your immediate environment.

How to Use Visual Learning for Success

Here’re 4 ways to use visual learning to boost your career or business:

1. Bring back the to-do list. Then add shapes and colors to boost productivity.

We live in an age where computers have taken over virtually every aspect of productivity and most human functions. But written lists are making a comeback, and with an endless number of important tasks to complete, having a to-do list of tasks in order of importance can improve your productivity.

While coming up with a list is initially challenging, adding colors and shapes to written lists that you personally write and manage gives you an extra layer of assurance and boosts aids recall so that you actually get stuff done.

I have tried this technique in my work as a registered nurse and discovered that adding shapes and colors to to-do lists helps me delegate tasks, recognize where more work is needed, and makes it easy to cross off completed tasks at the end of the day.

2. Add graphs, charts and symbols to your reports.

Yes, it seems like more work cut out for you. However, graphs enable you monitor the heartbeat of your business.

Graphs and charts help you trend your finances, budget, and pretty much any data overtime. With the help of free and premium software available on the market, it has become easier to take plain data and in a matter of seconds, have relevant information displayed in different shapes and images.

As an entrepreneur, you can make predictions and allocate funds wisely when you’re able to see whether your efforts are rewarded. You can use colors and charts to delegate actions to members of your team and track performance at the same time.

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And when broken down into monthly, quarterly, bi-annual or annual goals, graphs and charts communicate what ordinary text cannot.

3. Effectively brainstorm with mind-mapping.

Mind-mapping is not new but I don’t think it’s been talked about as often as we do to-do lists.

With mind mapping, you’re organizing information accurately and drawing relationships between concepts and pieces from a whole.

Think of a mind map as a tree with several branches. For example, the tree can symbolize healthcare while each branch stands for nursing, medicine, laboratory science, and so on. When you look at nursing, you can further branch out into types of nursing; pediatric, women’s health, critical care, and so on.

It’s an interesting relationship; the more ideas you’re able to come up with for your chosen subject, the deeper you get and the stronger the association.

Mind maps really show you relationships between subjects and topics, and simplifies processes that might seem complicated at first glance. In a way, it is like a graphical representation of facts presented in a simple, visual format.

Mind mapping isn’t only limited to career professionals; business owners can benefit from mind mapping by organizing their online learning activities and breaking down complex tasks into simple actions so that you can accurately measure productivity.

4. Add video streaming to meetings.

What if you could double the productivity of your team members by video streaming your meetings or adding flash animation to your presentation at the same time?

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When you offer video as an alternative method of processing information to colleagues, there is a greater chance of retaining information because we recreate these stories into images in our minds.

For organizations that hold virtual meetings, it can also be an effective way to enhance performance during if people can see their colleagues in addition to flash animation or whatever form of video is provided during the meeting.

Is Visual Learning Better Than Other Learning Styles?

No, that is not the point. The goal here is to supplement your existing dominant learning style with visual learning so that you can experience a significant boost in how you process and use everyday information.

You might discover that understanding scientific concepts are much easier after incorporating visual learning or that you’re able to understand your organization’s value when projected on a visual screen with charts and graphs.

The overall goal is to always be learning and to continue to leverage visual learning style in your career and business.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

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