Employee productivity is critical to any firm’s success, but an array of issues can keep workers from fully engaging in their tasks. Your job as a manager is to figure out how to best improve employee productivity while keeping morale high. Although employee productivity can be difficult to quantify in some industries, you’ll know when your employees have become more engaged in their work. They’ll be more positive and involved, and your business will run smoother than ever before.
Try one or more of the following five ways to improve employee productivity.
In many firms, only the top tier of executives receive bonuses for improvements in the company’s economic situation, but everyone is motivated by economic incentives. Brainstorm with your managers about how you can provide economic incentives for workers in every part of your company. Economic incentives give workers a tangible way to commit to your firm’s success. This may be the most powerful thing you can do to increase employee productivity.
Instead of just giving feedback once a year during employee evaluations, look for ways that employees can receive helpful, constructive feedback on a regular basis. This doesn’t need to be formal or written. A word of encouragement or a compliment for a job well done will go a long way toward increasing productivity. Don’t think that helpful feedback always has to be positive, either. Offering constructive criticism is a necessary management skill, and if it’s offered well, your employees will improve their job skills, thus increasing employee productivity.
An Atmosphere of Respect
When co-workers, employees, and employers see each other as human beings and not just accomplishers of a certain task, they have more respect for one another and for the work they do. Unfortunately, everyone knows what it feels like to be treated disrespectfully. Being treated this way causes feelings of self-doubt and resentment, and these feelings are not compatible with increased employee productivity. On the other hand, when people feel respected in the workplace, they’re much more likely to go the extra mile and take pride in a job well done.
It’s difficult to be productive when you’re not sure what to do. In fact, lack of training can bring down productivity significantly because untrained employees become paralyzed with fear: fear that they’ll mess things up, fear that they’ll lose their jobs, and more. To ensure that all employees are adequately trained, focus on those employees that are near the beginnings of their careers. Companies have a tendency to focus on “leadership training” for executives, but they ought to focus more resources on training those who are new if they want to increase employee productivity.
Just as it’s difficult to want to work hard in the face of unwarranted criticism or lack of encouragement, it’s also difficult to work when you don’t have the resources you need. Many companies find that their employee productivity increases when they start paying attention to employees’ needs. Maybe they’ll be able to do their jobs better with some updated equipment. Maybe one of your employees needs a more flexible schedule because she’s caring for her aging mother. Perhaps an employee needs emotional support to deal with unfair criticism he’s been facing from a client. It takes a discerning manager to provide individualized employee support, but such a manager will be able to increase employee productivity by making each worker feel valued.
By providing the above resources to your employees, you’ll be able to increase employee productivity and improve the environment at your company.